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“ What  is  aimed  at  is  an  accurate  description,  illustrated  by  plans,  measurements, 
drawings  or  photographs,  and  by  copies  of  insci-iptions,  of  such  remains  as  most 
deserve  notice,  with  the  history  of  them  so  far  as  it  may  he  traceable,  and  a record 
of  the  traditions  that  are  preserved  regarding  them.” Lord  Canning. 

“ What  the  learned  world  demand  of  us  in  India  is  to  be  quite  certain  of  our 
data,  to  place  the  monumental  record  before  them  exactly  as  it  now  exists,  and  to 
interpret  it  faithfully  and  literally.” James  Psinsep. 

Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1838,  p.  227. 







The  matter  contained  in  these  two  volumes  is  the  result 
of  the  archaeological  survey  which  I conducted  during  four 
consecutive  years  from  1862  to  1865.  The  object  of  this 
survey  cannot  he  better  stated  than  in  the  memorandum 
which  I laid  before  Lord  Canning  in  November  1861,  and 
which  led  to  my  immediate  appointment  as  Archaeological 
Surveyor  to  the  Government  of  India,  as  notified  in  the 
following  minute  : 

Minute  by  the  Right  Hon’ble  the  Governor  General  of  India 
in  Council  on  the  Antiquities  of  Upper  India, — dated  22nd 
January  1862. 

“ In  November  last,  when  at  Allahabad,  I had  some  com- 
munications with  Colonel  A.  Cunningham,  then  the  Chief 
Engineer  of  the  North-Western  Provinces,  regarding  an 
investigation  of  the  archaeological  remains  of  Upper  India. 

“ It  is  impossible  to  pass  through  that  part, — or  indeed, 
so  far  as  my  experience  goes,  any  part — of  the  British  ter- 
ritories in  India  without  being  struck  by  the  neglect  with 
which  the  greater  portion  of  the  architectural  remains,  and 
of  the  traces  of  by-gone  civilization  have  been  treated, 
though  many  of  these,  and  some  which  have  had  least 
notice,  are  full  of  beauty  and  interest. 

“ By  ‘ neglect’  I do  not  mean  only  the  omission  to 
restore  them,  or  even  to  arrest  their  decay  ; for  this  would 
be  a task  which,  in  many  cases,  would  require  an  expendi- 
ture of  labour  and  money  far  greater  than  any  Government 
of  India  could  reasonably  bestow  upon  it. 

“ But  so  far  as  the  Government  is  concerned,  there  has 
been  neglect  of  a much  cheaper  duty, — that  of  investigat- 
ing and  placing  on  record,  for  the  instruction  of  future 
generations,  many  particulars  that  might  still  be  rescued 
from  oblivion,  and  throw  light  upon  the  early  history  of 
England’s  great  dependency ; a history  which,  as  time  moves 
on,  as  the  country  becomes  more  easily  accessible  and 



traversable,  and  as  Englishmen  are  led  to  give  more  thought 
to  India  than  such  as  barely  suffices  to  hold  it  and  govern 
it,  will  assuredly  occupy,  more  and  more,  the  attention  of 
the  intelligent  and  enquiring  classes  in  European  countries. 

“ It  will  not  be  to  our  credit,  as  an  enlightened  ruling 
power,  if  we  continue  to  allow  such  fields  of  investigation, 
as  the  remains  of  the  old  Euddhist  capital  in  Behar,  the 
vast  ruins  of  Kanouj,  the  plains  round  Delhi,  studded  with 
ruins  more  thickly  than  even  the  Campagna  of  Borne,  and 
manv  others,  to  remain  without  more  examination  than  thev 
have  hitherto  received.  Everv  thing  that  has  hitherto  been 
done  in  this  way  has  been  done  by  private  persons,  imper- 
fectly and  without  system.  It  is  impossible  not  to  feel  that 
there  are  European  Governments,  which,  if  they  had  held 
our  rule  in  India,  would  not  have  allowed  this  to  be  said. 

“ It  is  true  that  in  1844*,  on  a representation  from  the 
Boyal  Asiatic  Society,  and  in  1847,  in  accordance  with 
detailed  suggestions  from  Lord  Hardinge,  the  Court  of 
Directors  gave  a liberal  sanction  to  certain  arrangements  for 
examining,  delineating,  and  recording  some  of  the  chief 
antiquities  of  India.  But  for  one  reason  or  another,  mainly 
perhaps  owing  to  the  officer  entrusted  with  the  task  having 
other  work  to  do,  and  owing  to  his  early  death,  very  little 
seems  to  have  resulted  from  this  endeavour.  A few  drawings 
of  antiquities,  and  some  remains,  were  transmitted  to  the 
India  Douse,  and  some  15  or  20  papers  were  contributed  by 
Major  Kittoe  and  Major  Cunningham  to  the  Journals  of 
the  Asiatic  Society ; but,  so  far  as  the  Government  is  con- 
cerned, the  scheme  appears  to  have  been  lost  sight  of  within 
two  or  three  years  of  its  adoption. 

“ I enclose  a memorandum  drawn  up  by  Colonel  Cunning- 
ham, who  has,  more  than  any  other  officer  on  this  side  of 
India,  made  the  antiquities  of  the  country  his  study,  and 
who  has  here  sketched  the  course  of  proceeding  which  a 
more  complete  and  systematic  archaeological  investigation 
should,  in  his  opinion,  take. 

“ I think  it  good, — and  none  the  worse  for  being  a begin- 
ning on  a moderate  scale.  It  will  certainly  cost  very  little 
in  itself,  and  will  commit  the  Government  to  no  future  or 
unforeseen  expense.  Bor  it  does  not  contemplate  the  spend- 
ing of  any  money  upon  repairs  and  preservation.  This, 



when  done  at  all,  should  he  done  upon  a separate  and  full 
consideration  of  any  case  which  may  seem  to  claim  it. 
What  is  aimed  at  is  an  accurate  description, — illustrated 
by  plans,  measurements,  drawings  or  photographs,  and  by 
copies  of  inscriptions, — of  such  remains  as  most  deserve 
notice,  with  the  history  of  them  so  far  as  it  may  he  trace- 
able, and  a record  of  the  traditions  that  are  retained  regard- 
ing them. 

“ I propose  that  the  work  he  entrusted  to  Colonel  Cun- 
ningham, with  the  understanding  that  it  continue  during 
the  present  and  the  following  cold  season,  by  which  time  a 
fair  judgment  of  its  utility  and  interest  may  be  formed. 
It  may  then  he  persevered  in,  and  expanded,  or  otherwise 
dealt  with  as  may  seem  good  at  the  time. 

“ Colonel  Cunningham  should  receive  Rs.  450  a month, 
with  Its.  250  when  in  the  field  to  defray  the  cost  of  making 
surveys  and  measurements,  and  of  other  mechanical  assist- 
ance. If  something  more  should  he  necessary  to  obtain 
the  services  of  a native  subordinate  of  the  Medical  or  Public 
Works  Department,  competent  to  take  photographic  views, 
it  should  he  given. 

“ It  would  be  premature  to  determine  how  the  results  of 
Colonel  Cunningham’s  labours  should  be  dealt  with ; but 
whilst  the  Government  would  of  course  retain  a proprietary 
right  in  them  for  its  own  purposes,  I recommend  that  the 
interests  of  Colonel  Cunningham  should  be  considered  in  the 
terms  upon  which  they  may  be  furnished  to  the  Public.” 

Memorandum  by  Colonel  A.  Cunningham,  of  Engineers,  regarding  a 
proposed  investigation  of  the  archaeological  remains  of  Upper  India. 

« During  the  one  hundred  years  of  British  dominion  in 
India,  the  Government  has  done  little  or  nothing  towards 
the  preservation  of  its  ancient  monuments,  which,  in  the 
almost  total  absence  of  any  written  history,  form  the  only 
reliable  sources  of  information  as  to  the  early  condition  of 
the  country.  Some  of  these  monuments  have  already  en- 
dured for  ages,  and  are  likely  to  last  for  ages  still  to  come ; 
but  there  are  many  others  which  are  daily  suffering  from 
the  effects  of  time,  and  which  must  soon  disappear  alto- 
gether, unless  preserved  by  the  accurate  drawings  and  faith- 
ful descriptions  of  the  archaeologist. 



“ All  that  has  hitherto  been  done  towards  the  illustration 
of  ancient  Indian  history  has  been  due  to  the  unaided  efforts 
of  private  individuals.  These  researches  consequently  have 
always  been  desultory  and  unconnected  and  frequently  in- 
complete, owing  partly  to  the  short  stay  which  individual 
officers  usually  make  at  any  particular  place,  and  partly  to 
the  limited  leisure  which  could  he  devoted  to  such  pursuits. 

“ Hitherto  the  Government  has  been  chiefly  occupied 
with  the  extension  and  consolidation  of  empire,  hut  the 
establishment  of  the  Trigonometrical  Survey  shews  that  it 
has  not  been  unmindful  of  the  claims  of  science.  It  would 
redound  equally  to  the  honor  of  the  British  Government  to 
institute  a careful  and  systematic  investigation  of  all  the 
existing  monuments  of  ancient  India. 

“ In  describing  the  ancient  geography  of  India,  the  elder 
Pliny,  for  the  sake  of  clearness,  follows  the  footsteps  of 
Alexander  the  Great.  For  a similar  reason,  in  the  present 
proposed  investigation,  I would  follow  the  footsteps  of  the 
Chinese  pilgrim  Hwen  Thsang,  who,  in  the  seventh  century 
of  our  era,  traversed  India  from  west  to  east  and  hack  again 
for  the  purpose  of  visiting  all  the  famous  sites  of  Buddhist 
history  and  tradition.  In  the  account  of  his  travels,  although 
the  Buddhist  remains  are  described  in  most  detail  with  all 
their  attendant  legends  and  traditions,  yet  the  numbers  and 
appearance  of  the  Brahmanical  temples  are  also  noted,  and 
the  travels  of  the  Chinese  pilgrim  thus  hold  the  same  place 
in  the  history  of  India,  which  those  of  Pausanias  hold  in 
the  history  of  Greece. 

“ In  the  North-Western  Provinces  and  Bihar  the  princi- 
pal places  to  he  visited  and  examined  are  the  following,  which 
are  also  shown  in  the  accompanying  sketch  map : 

“ I.  Khdlsi,  on  the  Jumna,  where  the  river  leaves  the 
hills. — At  this  place  there  still  exists  a large  boulder  stone, 
covered  with  one  of  Asoka’s  inscriptions,  in  which  the  names 
of  Antiochus,  Ptolemy,  Antigonus,  Magas,  and  Alexander 
are  all  recorded.  This  portion  of  the  inscription,  which  on 
the  rock  of  Kapurdigiri  (in  the  Yusufzai  plain),  and  of 
Dliauli  (in  Cuttack)  is  much  mutilated  and  abraded,  is  here 
in  perfect  preservation.  A copy  of  this  inscription  and  an 
account  of  the  ruins  would  therefore  he  valuable. 



“ II.  Hariclwdr,  on  the  Ganges,  with  the  opposite  city 

“ III.  Manddwar , Sambhal,  and  Sahaswdn , in  Rohil- 

“ IY.  Karsdna  near  Khasganj. 

“ Y.  Sankissa,  between  Mainpuri  and  Fattehgarh,  where 
it  is  known  that  many  remains  of  Buddhism  still  exist. 
This  was  one  of  the  sacred  places  amongst  the  Buddhists. 

“ YI.  Mathura. — In  one  of  the  ancient  mounds  outside 
the  city  the  remains  of  a large  monastery  have  been  lately  dis- 
covered. Numerous  statues,  sculptured  pillars,  and  inscribed 
bases  of  columns,  have  been  brought  to  light.  Amongst 
these  inscriptions,  some,  which  are  dated  in  an  unknown  era, 
are  of  special  interest  and  value.  They  belong  most  probably 
to  the  first  century  of  the  Christian  era,  and  one  of  them 
records  the  name  of  the  great  King  Huvishka,  who  is  pre- 
sumed to  be  the  same  as  the  Indo-Scythian  King  Hushka. 

“ YII.  Delhi. — The  Hindu  remains  of  Delhi  are  few, 
but  interesting.  The  stone  pillars  of  Asoka  and  the  iron 
pillar  are  well  known,  but  the  other  remains  have  not  yet 
been  described,  although  none  have  been  more  frequently 
visited  than  the  magnificent  ruined  cloisters  around  the  Kut'b 
Minar,  which  belong  to  the  period  of  the  Great  Tuar 

£<  VIII.  Kanouj. — No  account  of  the  ruins  of  this  once 
celebrated  capital  has  yet  been  published.  Several  ruins  are 
known  to  exist,  but  it  may  be  presumed  that  many  more 
would  be  brought  to  light  by  a careful  survey  of  the  site. 

“IX.  Kausdmhi. — On  the  Jumna  30  miles  above  Alla- 
habad.— The  true  position  of  this  once  famous  city  has  only 
lately  been  ascertained.  It  has  not  yet  been  visited,  but  it 
may  be  confidently  expected  that  its  remains  would  well 
repay  examination. 

“X.  Allahabad. — The  only  existing  relics  of  antiquity 
that  I am  aware  of  are  the  well  known  pillar  of  Asoka  and 
the  holy  tree  in  one  of  the  underground  apartments  of  the 
fort.  Many  buildings  once  existed,  but  I am  afraid  that 
they  were  all  destroyed  to  furnish  materials  for  the  erection 
of  the  fort  in  the  reign  of  Akbar. 

“ XI.  To  the  south  of  Allahabad  there  are  the  ruins  of 
Kajrdho  and  Mahoha , the  two  capitals  of  the  ancient  Cliandel 



Rajas  of  Bundlekhand.  The  remains  at  Kajraho  are  more 
numerous  and  in  better  preservation  than  those  of  any  other 
ancient  city  that  I have  seen.  Several  long  and  important 
inscriptions  still  exist,  which  give  a complete  genealogy  of  the 
Chandel  dynasty  for  about  400  years. 

“ XII.  Ban&ras. — The  magnificent  tope  of  Sarnath  is 
well  known  ; but  no  description  of  the  tope,  nor  of  the  ruins 
around  it,  has  yet  been  published.  At  a short  distance  from 
Banaras  is  the  inscribed  pillar  of  Bhitari,  which  requires  to 
be  re-examined. 

“ XIII.  Jonpur . — Although  the  existing  remains  at  this 
place  are  Muhammadan,  yet  it  is  well  known  that  the  prin- 
cipal buildings  were  originally  Hindu  temples,  of  which  the 
cloisters  still  remain  almost  unaltered.  These  ruins  have 
not  yet  been  described,  but  from  my  own  success,  in  the 
beginning  of  this  year,  in  discovering  a Sanskrit  inscription 
built  into  one  of  the  arches,  I believe  that  a careful  examina- 
tion would  be  rewarded  with  further  discoveries  of  interest 
illustrative  of  the  great  Rathor  dynasty  of  Kanouj. 

“ XIV.  Fgzdbdd. — The  ruins  of  Ajudhva  have  not  been 
described.  Numerous  very  ancient  coins  are  found  in  the  site 
and  several  ruined  mounds  are  known  to  exist  there  ; but  no 
account  has  yet  been  published.  As  the  birth-place  of 
Rama  and  as  the  scene  of  one  of  the  early  events  in  Bud- 
dha’s life,  Ajudhva  has  always  been  held  equally  sacred,  both 
by  Brahmins  and  Buddhists,  and  I feel  satisfied  that  a sys- 
tematic examination  of  its  ruins  would  be  rewarded  by  the 
discovery  of  many  objects  of  interest. 

“ XV.  Sravasti. — Even  the  site  of  this  once  celebrated 
city  is  unknown,  but  it  may  be  looked  for  between  EyzaMd 
and  Gorakhpur. 

“XVI.  Kapilavastu,  the  birth-place  of  Buddha,  was 
held  in  special  veneration  by  his  followers,  but  its  site  is 

“ XVII.  Kusinagara , the  scene  of  Buddha’s  death, 
was  one  of  the  most  holy  places  in  India  in  the  estimation 
of  Buddhists,  but  its  site  is  at  present  unknown.  It  may, 
however,  confidently  be  looked  for  along  the  line  of  the 
Gunduk  river.  At  Kapila  and  Kusinagara,  the  scenes  of 
Buddha’s  birth  and  death,  numerous  topes  and  stately  monas- 
teries once  existed  to  attest  the  pious  munificence  of  his 
votaries.  The  ruins  of  many  of  these  buildings  must  still 



exist,  and  would  no  doubt  reward  a careful  search.  At 
31athia,  Radhia,  and  Bakra,  in  Tirliut,  stone  pillars  still  re- 
main, and  in  other  places  ruined  topes  were  seen  by  Major 
Kittoe ; but  no  description  of  these  remains  has  yet  been 
made  known. 

“XVIII.  Vaisali. — This  city  was  the  scene  of  the 
second  Buddhist  synod,  and  was  one  of  the  chief  places  of 
note  amongst  Buddhists.  At  Bassar,  to  the  north  of  Patna, 
one  tope  is  known  to  exist,  but  no  search  has  yet  been  made 
for  other  remains.  The  people  of  Vaisali  were  known  to 
Ptolemy,  who  calls  them  Passaloe. 

“ XIX.  Patna. — The  ancient  Palibothra.  I am  not 
aware  that  there  are  any  existing  remains  at  Patna,  but 
numerous  coins,  gems,  and  seals  are  annually  found  in  the 
bed  of  the  river. 

“ XX.  Paj  agriha,  between  Patna  and  Gaya,  was  the 
capital  of  Magadha  in  the  time  of  Buddha.  Some  of  the 
principal  scenes  of  his  life  occurred  in  its  neighbourhood, 
and  the  place  was  consequently  held  in  very  great  veneration 
by  all  Buddhists.  Every  hill  and  every  stream  had  been 
made  holy  by  Buddha’s  presence,  and  the  whole  country 
around  Bajagrilia  was  covered  with  buildings  to  commem- 
orate the  principal  events  of  his  life.  Numerous  ruined 
topes,  sculptured  friezes,  and  inscribed  pillars  still  remain 
scattered  over  the  country  as  lasting  proofs  of  the  high  venera- 
tion in  which  this  religious  capital  of  Buddhism  was  held  by 
the  people. 

“ In  this  rapid  sketch  of  the  places  that  seem  worthy  of 
examination,  I have  confined  myself  entirely  to  the  North- 
Western  Provinces,  and  Bihar,  as  containing  most  of  the 
cities  celebrated  in  the  ancient  history  of  India.  But  to 
make  this  account  of  Indian  archaeological  remains  more 
complete,  it  would  be  necessary  to  examine  the  ancient 
cities  of  the  Panjab,  such  as  Taxila,  Sakala,  and  Jalandhar 
on  the  west,  the  caves  and  inscribed  rocks  of  Cuttack  and 
Orissa  on  the  east,  and  the  topes  and  other  remains  of  Ujain 
and  Bhilsa,  writh  the  caves  of  Dhamnar  and  Kliolvi  in 
Central  India. 

“ I believe  that  it  would  be  possible  to  make  a careful 
examination  of  all  the  places  which  I have  noted  during  two 
cold  seasons.  The  first  season  might  be  devoted  to  a survey 
of  Gaya  and  Bajagrilia,  and  of  all  the  remains  in  Tirliut  to 
the  eastward  of  Banaras  and  Gorakhpur,  while  the  survey  of 
all  to  the  westward  of  Banaras  would  occupy  the  second  season. 



" I would  attach  to  the  description  of  each  place  a general 
survey  of  the  site,  showing  clearly  the  positions  of  all  the 
existing  remains,  with  a ground  plan  of  every  building  or 
ruin  of  special  note,  accompanied  hy  drawings  and  sections 
of  all  objects  of  interest.  It  would  he  desirable  also  to 
have  photographic  views  of  many  of  the  remains,  both  of 
architecture  and  of  sculpture ; but  to  obtain  these  it  would 
he  necessary  to  have  the  services  of  a photographer.  Careful 
fac-similes  of  all  inscriptions  would  of  course  he  made, 
ancient  coins  would  also  he  collected  on  each  site,  and  all 
the  local  traditions  would  be  noted  down  and  compared. 
The  description  of  each  place  with  all  its  accompanying 
drawings  and  illustrations  would  be  complete  in  itself,  and 
the  whole,  when  finished,  would  furnish  a detailed  and 
accurate  account  of  the  archaeological  remains  of  Upper 

A perusal  of  the  four  reports  contained  in  these 
volumes  will  show  that  I carried  out  with  hut  little  devia- 
tion the  programme  laid  down  in  this  memorandum.  The 
report  of  each  season’s  works  was  written  during  the  fol- 
lowing hot  weather  and  rains,  which  was  too  short  a period 
to  admit  of  sufficient  reading  and  reflection  for  the  prepara- 
tion of  a well  considered  account  of  all  the  interesting  places 
visited.  Each  report  was  printed  immediately  after  its  sub- 
mission to  Government  for  official  circulation.  Some  of 
these  official  copies  have  been  reprinted,  hut  the  whole  stock 
was  soon  exhausted,  and,  as  frequent  enquiry  is  still  made  for 
them,  the  present  publication  is  intended  to  place  within  the 
reach  of  all  who  are  interested  in  archaeological  researches 
a cheap  account  of  the  only  systematic,  though  incomplete, 
survey  that  has  yet  been  made  of  the  antiquities  of  North- 
ern India. 

The  work  has  been  carefully  examined  and  cleared  of  all 
obvious  errors  ; and  numerous  alterations  and  additions  have 
been  made  to  the  text,  which  is  now  supplied  with  the 
necessary  notes  and  references  that  were  wanting  in  the 
official  copies.  To  make  the  account  as  complete  as  possible, 
I have  added  no  less  than  ninety-nine  maps,  views,  plans 
and  other  illustrations,  all  of  which  have  been  drawn  by  my 
own  hand. 


The  15 tli  October  1871. 





Pbeface  ...  ...  ...  ..  i 

Inteodtjction  ...  ...  ...  ...  I 

REPORT  OF  1861-62. 

1.  Gaya  ...  ...  ...  .1 

2.  Buddha-Gaya  ...  ...  ...  ...  4 

3.  Bakror  ...  ...  ...  ...  12 

4.  Pun&wa  ...  ...  ...  ...  13 

5.  Ku.rki  har,  or  Kukkutapada-giri  ...  ...  ...  14 

6.  Giryek,  or  Indi-a-sila-guba  ...  ...  ...  16 

7.  Bdjgir,  or  Rdjagi’ika  ...  ...  ...  20 

8.  Baragaon  or  Nalanda  ...  ...  ...  28 

9.  Bib&r  ...  ...  ...  ...  36 

10.  Ghosriwa  ...  ...  ...  ...  38 

11.  Titarciwa  ...  ...  ...  ...  39 

12.  Aphsar  ...  ...  ...  ...  40 

13.  Barabar  ...  ...  ...  ...  ib. 

14.  Dharawat  ...  ...  ...  ...  53 

15.  Bes&rb  or  Vais&li  ...  ...  ..."  ...  55 

16.  Kesariya  ...  ...  ...  ...  54 

17.  Lauriya  Ara-Naj  ...  ...  ...  ...  57 

18.  Lauriya  Navandgarh  ...  ...  ...  68 

19.  Padaraona,  or  Pawa...  ...  ...  ...  74 

20.  Kasia,  or  Kusinagara  ...  ...  ...  76 

21.  Khukhundo,  or  Kislikindapura  ...  ...  ...  85 

22.  Kahaon,  or  Kakubharati  ...  ...  ...  91 

23.  Hatbiya-dab  ...  ...  ...  ...  95 

24.  Bhitari  ...  ...  ...  . gg 

25.  Banaras  Sdruatb  ...  ...  ...  103 




REPORT  OF  1862-63. 





...  131 



...  231 



...  244 


Madawar,  or  Madipur 

...  248 


Kashipui-,  or  Govisana 

...  251 


Bamnagar,  or  Ahichhatra 

...  255 


Soron,  or  Surakshetra 

...  265 


Atranjikkera,  or  Pilosana 

...  268 


Sankisa,  or  Sangkasya 

...  271 


Kanoj,  or  Kanyakubja 

...  279 


Kakupur,  or  Ayuto  ... 

...  293 


Daundiakkera,  or  Hayamukka 

...  296 


Allakakad,  or  Prayaga 

...  ib. 


Kosam  or  Kosdmki  ... 

...  301 


Sultanpur,  or  Kusapura 

...  313 



...  315 


Ajudkya,  or  Saketa  ... 

...  317 


Hatila,  or  Asokpur  ... 

...  327 


Saket-Maket,  or  Srdvasti 


...  330 



...  348 



...  350 




...  351 



...  352 



...  357 




...  358 



• •• 

...  ib. 







Map  of  the  Gangetic  Provinces,  shewing  the  travels  of  Fa 

Hian  and  Hwen  Thsang 



Map  of  North-West  India,  showing  Hwen  Thsang’s  Route  ... 


Map  of  Gaya  and  Bihdr 



Plan  of  the  Great  Temple  at  Buddha-Gaya,  with  the  Bodhi- 
drum,  or  Holy  Fig  tree,  and  the  Buddhist  Railing  sur- 

rounding the  Tree  and  Temple 



Pedestal  of  Statue  in  the  Great  Temple,  with  Niches  from 
the  exterior  ornamentation  of  the  Great  Temple,  and 

Temple  of  T&ra  Devi  .. . 



Pavement  Slabs  from  the  granite  floor  of  the  Great  Temple, 
showing  worshippers  paying  their  adorations  after  the 

manner  of  the  Burmese  ShiJcoh 



The  Buddha-pad,  or  Prints  of  Buddha’s  feet,  in  front  of  the 
Great  Temple.  Inscriptions  on  Granite  Pillars  reading 

Ayaye  Kuragiye  danam 



Corner  and  middle  Pillars  of  the  Sandstone  Railings — in  the 

Samadh  of  Guru  Chait  Mall,  marked  B and  C in  Plate  IV. 



Sculptured  Basreliefs  on  the  Buddhist  Railings.  The  letters 
A.  E.  F.  refer  to  sandstone  Pillars  in  the  Samadh,  and 

the  Nos.  to  Granite  Pillars  in  the  Mahan t’s  residence 



Ditto  ditto  ditto 



Ditto  ditto  ditto 



Maps  of  Punawa  and  Kurkih&r 



Inscriptions  at  Nalanda,  Rajgir,  Giryek,  and  Kurkihar.  In- 
scriptions Nos.  1 and  2 contain  the  name  of  Nalanda. 
No.  1 gives  the  name  Gopala,  the  foimder  of  the  Pfila 

dynasty  of  Bengal  in  the  1st  year  of  his  reign 



Map  of  Rajgir  and  Giryek,  showing  the  site  of  the  ancient 
city  of  Ivusagarapura  and  the  positions  of  its  five  sur- 

rounding hills 



View  of  Jarasandha’s  Baithak  at  Giryek  ... 



Map  of  the  ruins  of  N &lan da 



Bihar  Pillar  Inscriptions  ... 



Map  of  Barabar  and  Nagarjuni  Hills 



Plans  and  Sections  of  Barabar  and  Nagarjuni  Caves 



Inscriptions  in  ditto  ditto 



Map  of  Besarh  and  Bakra  ... 



Pillars  at  Bakhra  and  Lauriya 



Maps  of  Kesariya  and  Lauriya  Navandgarh 









View  of  the  Kesariya  Stupa  and  Mound 

...  66 


View  of  the  Pillar  and  Mounds  at  Lauriya  ... 

...  68 


Map  of  Kasia,  or  Kusinagara 

...  76 


View  of  Kasia 

...  78 


Maps  of  Khukhundo  and  Kahaon 

...  85 


Kahaon  and  Bhitari  Pillars 

...  92 


Inscriptions  on  ditto  ditto 

...  94 


Maps  of  Sarnath,  Banaras  ... 

...  104 


Major  Kittoe’s  Excavations  at  Sarnath 

...  116 


Lieutenant  Cunningham’s  ditto  ditto 

...  120 


Ditto  Inscriptions  from  Sarnath 

...  123 


















No.  1 is  the  Buddhist  profession  of  faith,  found  at  10  feet 
from  the  top  of  the  Great  Stupa. 

No.  2 gives  the  characters  in  use  when  the  Stupa  was  building. 
No.  3 records  the  religious  gift  (of  a statue)  of  S&lcya  Bhik- 
shu  by  Buddha  Sena. 

No.  4 records  a gift  by  Hari  Gupta. 

No.  5,  in  much  later  characters,  gives  the  Buddhist  profession 
of  faith,  and  records  the  religious  gift  of  the  Up&sika, 
Thakkur  Sri  Yajnaka? 

Map  of  the  Ruins  of  Delhi 

Map  of  L&lkot,  the  Hindu  Citadel  of  Delhi... 

Hindu  Pillar,  and  mason’s  marks  on  pillars... 

Plan  of  the  Masjid  Kutb  ul  Islam,  or  Kutb  Masjid 
Map  of  Mathura 
Female  statue  from  Mathura 
Asoka  Inscription  on  Rock  at  Khalsi 
Maps  of  Madawar  and  Ivashipur 
Map  of  Ahichhatra 
View  of  Stupa  and  Ruins  at  Ahichhatra 
Map  of  Sankisa  and  Agahat  Sarai 
Elephant  Capital  of  Asoka  Pillar  at  Sankisa 
MapofKanoj  ... 

Map  of  Kosfimhi 
Map  of  Ajudhya 
Map  of  Sravasti 

Inscription  at  Dewal  in  Rohilkhand 










The  study  of  Indian- antiquities  received  its  first  im- 
pulse from  Sir  William  Jones,  who  in  1784  founded  the 
Asiatic  Society  of  Bengal.  Amongst  the  first  members  were 
Warren  Hastings,  the  ablest  of  our  Indian  rulers,  and 
Charles  Wilkins,  who  was  the  first  Englishman  to  acquire 
a knowledge  of  Sanskrit,  and  who  cut  with  his  own  hands 
the  first  Devanagari  and  Bengali  types.  During  a residence 
of  little  more  than  ten  years,  Sir  William  Jones  opened  the 
treasury  of  Sanskrit  literature  to  the  world  by  the  transla- 
tion of  Sakuntala  and  the  institutes  of  Manu.  His  annual 
discourses  to  the  Society  showed  the  wide  grasp  of  his  mind ; 
and  the  list  of  works  which  he  drew  up  is  so  comprehensive 
that  the  whole  of  his  scheme  of  translations  has  not  even 
yet  been  completed  by  the  separate  labours  of  many  suc- 
cessors. His  first  work  was  to  establish  a systematic  and 
uniform  system  of  orthography  for  the  transcription  of 
Oriental  languages,  which,  with  a very  few  modifications,  has 
since  been  generally  adopted.  This  was  followed  by  several 
essays — On  Musical  Modes — On  the  Origin  of  the  Game  of 
Chess,  which  he  traced  to  India — and  On  the  Lunar  Year  of 
the  Hindus  and  their  Chronology.  In  the  last  paper  he 
made  the  identification  of  Chandra-Gupta  with  Sandra- 
kottos,  which  for  many  years  was  the  sole  firm  ground  in 
the  quicksands  of  Indian  history.  At  the  same  time  he 
suggested  that  Palibotlira,  or  Pataliputra,  the  capital  of 
Sandrakottos,  must  be  Patna,  as  he  found  that  the  Son 
River,  which  joins  the  Ganges  only  a few  miles  above  Patna, 
was  also  named  Hiranyabahu,  or  the  “ golden-armed,”  an 
appellation  which  at  once  re-called  the  Erranoboas  of 

The  early  death  of  Jones  in  1794,  which  seemed  at  first 
to  threaten  the  prosperity  of  the  newly  established  Society, 




was  tlie  immediate  cause  of  bringing  forward  Colebrooke, 
so  that  the  mantle  of  the  elder  was  actually  caught  as  it  fell 
by  the  younger  scholar,  who,  although  he  had  not  yet 
appeared  as  an  author,  volunteered  to  complete  the  Digest  of 
Hindu  Law,  which  was  left  unfinished  by  Jones. 

Charles  Wilkins,  indeed,  had  preceded  him  in  the 
translation  of  several  inscriptions  in  the  first  and  second 
volumes  of  the  Asiatic  Researches,  hut  his  communications 
then  ceased,  and  on  Jones’  death  in  1794  the  public  looked 
to  Davis,  Wilford,  and  Colebrooke  for  the  materials  of  the 
next  volume. 

Samuel  Davis  had  already  written  an  excellent  paper 
on  Hindu  astronomy,  and  a second  on  the  Indian  cycle  of 
Jupiter;  hut  he  had  no  leisure  for  Sanskrit  studies,  and  his 
communications  to  the  Asiatic  Society  now  ceased  alto- 

Francis  Wilford,  an  officer  of  engineers,  was  of 
Swiss  extraction.  He  was  a good  Classical  and  Sanskrit 
scholar,  and  his  varied  and  extensive  reading  was  success- 
fully brought  into  use  for  the  illustration  of  ancient  Indian 
geography.  But  his  judgment  was  not  equal  to  his 
learning  ;*  and  his  wild  speculations  on  Egypt  and  on  the 
Sacred  Isles  of  the  West,  in  the  3rd  and  9th  volumes  of  the 
Asiatic  Researches,  have  dragged  him  down  to  a lower  posi- 
tion than  he  is  justly  entitled  to  both  by  his  abilities  and 
his  attainments.  His  “ Essay  on  the  comparative  Geogra- 
phy of  India,”  which  was  left  unfinished  at  his  death,  and 
which  was  only  published  in  1851  at  my  earnest  recom- 
mendation, is  entirely  free  from  the  speculations  of  his 
earlier  works,  and  is  a living  monument  of  the  better  judg- 
ment of  his  latter  days. 

Henry  Colebrooke  was  the  worthy  successor  of  Sir 
William  Jones,  and  though  his  acquirements  were,  perhaps, 
not  so  varied  as  those  of  the  brilliant  founder  of  the  Society, 
yet  he  possessed  a scholarship  equally  accurate  in  both  the 
Classical  and  Sanskrit  languages.  This  soon  ripened  into  a 
wide  knowledge  of  Sanskrit  literature,  and  his  early 
mathematical  bias  and  training,  combined  with  a singularly 

* H.  H.  Wilson,  in  Ills  Hindu  Theatre,  I.,  9,  calls  Wilford  a “ learned  and  laborious, 
but  injudicious  writer. 



sound  judgment,  gave  him  a more  complete  mastery  over 
the  whole  range  of  Sanskrit  learning, — its  religion,  its  law 
and  its  philosophy,  its  language  and  its  literature,  its  algebra 
and  its  astronomy, — than  any  other  scholar  has  since  acquired. 
All  Colebrooke’s  papers  may  he  read  both  with  interest  and 

In  the  first  year  of  this  century  he  gave  translations  of 
Yisala  Deva’s  inscriptions  on  the  Delhi  pillar.  These  were 
followed  by  other  translations  in  the  9th  volume  of  the 
Researches  in  1807,  and  in  the  1st  volume  of  the  Royal 
Asiatic  Society’s  Translations  in  1824,  which  exhibit  the 
same  critical  scholarship  and  sound  judgment.  But  a more 
valuable  contribution  is  his  “Essay  on  the  Vedas,”*  which 
first  gave  to  the  European  world  a full  and  accurate  account 
of  the  sacred  volumes  of  the  Hindus.  Other  essays  followed 
at  intervals, — on  the  Sanskrit  and  Prakrit  languages ; on 
the  Philosophy  of  the  Hindus ; on  the  Indian  and  Arabian 
divisions  of  the  Zodiac ; on  the  notions  of  Hindu  astro- 
nomers concerning  the  Precession ; and  on  the  Algebra  of 
Brahma  Gupta  and  Bhaskara.  The  mere  titles  of  these 
essays  are  sufficient  to  show  the  wide  range  of  his  studies. 
But  the  grasp  is  as  firm  as  the  range  is  wide,  and  these 
essays  still  remain  our  standard  works  on  the  subjects  of 
which  they  treat. 

Colebrooke  left  India  in  1815.  Eor  several  years  after 
his  return  to  England  he  continued  his  studies  and  gave  to 
the  world  some  of  the  essays  which  have  already  been 
noticed.  But  his  latter  years  were  clouded  by  family 
bereavements  and  continued  ill  health,  under  which  he  at 
last  sank  on  the  10th  March  1837,  in  his  72nd  year.f 

In  the  year  1800  Dr.  Buchanan  (who  afterwards  took 
the  name  of  Hamilton)  was  deputed  by  the  Marquis  of 
Wellesley  to  make  an  agricultural  survey  of  Mysore.  This 
particular  duty  he  performed  with  much  ability ; but  the 
value  of  his  work  is  greatly  increased  by  several  interesting 
notices  which  he  has  given  of  the  antiquities  of  the  country, 
and  of  the  various  races  of  people  in  Southern  India.  The 
best  acknowledgment  of  the  value  of  this  work  was  the 

# Asiatic  Researches,  Vol.  IX. 

t The  main  facts  of  this  brief  sketch  are  taken  from  a deeply  interesting  and  instructive 
memoir  written  by  his  son. — See  Journal  of  Royal  Asiatic  Society,  Vol.  V, 



appointment  of  Buchanan,  in  1807,  by  the  Court  of  Direc- 
tors, to  make  a statistical  survey  of  the  Bengal  Presidency. 

Por  seven  years  Buchanan  pursued  his  survey  through 
the  provinces  of  Bihar,  Shahabad,  Bhagalpur,  Gorakhpur, 
Dinajpur,  Puraniya,  Rangpur,  and  Assam,  when  his  labours 
were  unfortunately  brought  to  an  abrupt  close.  The  results 
of  the  survey  were  transmitted  to  England  in  1816,  where 
they  remained  unnoticed  until  1838,  when  Mr.  Montgomery 
Martin  “ obtained  permission  to  examine  the  manuscripts, 
which  eventually  led  to  their  publication.”  To  him  we 
certainly  owe  the  publication  of  this  valuable  work  ; but  I 
must  confess  that  the  warmth  of  my  gratitude  for  this 
welcome  service  is  absolutely  frozen  by  the  coolness  of 
appropriation  displayed  on  the  title-page,  where  the  name 
of  Buchanan  is  entirely  omitted,  and  the  districts  of  Eastern 
India  are  stated  to  have  been  “ surveyed  under  the  orders 
of  the  Supreme  Government,  and  collated  from  the  original 
documents  at  the  East  India  Office  by  Montgomery  Martin.” 
This  singular  proceeding  has  not  escaped  the  notice  of 
M.  Vivien  de  St.  Martin,  who  remarks  that  the  three  volumes 
had  been  published  “ sans  y mettre  le  nom  de  M.  Buchanan.” 
It  is,  howrever,  but  fair  to  say  that  full  credit  is  given  to 
Buchanan  in  the  introduction,  and  that  the  work  appears  to 
be  satisfactorily  edited. 

Although  the  instructions  given  to  Buchanan  included 
neither  the  history  nor  the  antiquities  of  the  country,  yet 
both  were  diligently  explored  by  him ; and  when,  after  a 
lapse  of  upwards  of  twenty  years,  a great  mass  of  the  matter 
collected  by  the  survey  was  found  to  have  become  useless, 
the  value  of  the  traditional  or  recorded  history,  and  of  the 
monuments  and  relics  of  antiquity,  remained  unchanged. 
All  this  part  of  the  work  has  been  published  by  the  editor 
with  a fair  proportion  of  plates,  from  which  vTe  learn  that 
Buchanan  was  amongst  the  first  to  perceive  the  value  and 
importance  of  detailed  plans  and  exact  measurements  of 
remarkable  buildings  and  ancient  sites.  His  notices  of  the 
Buddhist  remains  at  Gaya  and  Baragaon  in  Bihar,  of  Kasia 
and  Kahaon  in  Gorakhpur,  and  at  many  other  places,  are 
not  less  creditable  to  him  because,  through  delay  in  the 
publication  of  his  work,  they  were  partly  anticipated  by 
James  Prinsep.  His  historical  and  archaeological  researches 
in  the  districts  of  Eastern  India  are  specially  valuable  for 



tlieir  sound  judgment  and  conscientious  accuracy.  I have 
myself  visited  many  of  the  places  described  by  Buchanan, 
and  I can  vouch  for  the  meritorious  minuteness  and  strict 
correctness  of  his  descriptions. 

The  Indian  mantle  of  Jones,  which  Colebrooke  had 
worn  so  worthily  for  twenty  years,  was  not  destined  to  remain 
without  a claimant.  Before  Colebrooke  left  India  in  1815 
Horace  Hayman  Wilson  had  become  Secretary  of  the 
Asiatic  Society,  and  had  published  his  translation  of  the 
Megha-duta,  or  “ cloud-messenger”  of  Kalidasa.  This  was 
followed  in  1819  by  his  Sanskrit  Dictionary,  a work  of 
great  labour  and  merit,  and  in  1827  by  his  Hindu  Theatre, 
which  opened  to  the  European  world  a novel  and  interest- 
ing variety  of  the  dramatic  art.  At  the  same  time  be  con- 
tributed many  valuable  papers  to  the  Quarterly  Oriental 
Magazine,  amongst  which  his  translations  of  stories  from 
Sanskrit  and  of  some  episodes  from  the  Mahabharata,  are 
perhaps  the  most  pleasing,  and  his  review  of  the  first  fifteen 
volumes  of  the  Asiatic  Researches  the  most  important.  In 
1825  he  published  an  essay  on  the  Hindu  history  of  Kashmir, 
which  gives  a clear  and  very  interesting  account  of  the 
early  history  of  the  famous  valley. 

In  the  beginning  of  1833  Wilson  returned  to  England, 
where  he  continued  his  Oriental  studies  with  unabated  ardour. 
The  two  principal  works  of  his  English  career  were  an 
account  of  the  coins  and  antiquities  of  Afghanistan,  contain- 
ed in  “Ariana  Antiqua,”  and  his  translation  of  the  Rig- 
Veda.  The  geographical  portion  of  Ariana  Antiqua,  under 
the  head  of  “ Early  Notices  of  Ariana,”  is  full  and  valuable ; 
hut  his  account  of  Masson’s  collection  of  coins  makes  no 
advance  in  Indian  numismatics,  beyond  the  point  which 
Prinsep  had  reached  at  the  time  of  his  death.  Indeed, 
Wilson’s  archaeological  writings  have  added  little,  if  anything, 
to  his  reputation.  His  fame  rests  on  his  Sanskrit  scholar- 
ship, and  on  the  many  valuable  works,  both  original  and 
translated,  which  he  gave  to  the  world  during  bis  long  and 
brilliant  career.  To  the  general  public,  his  most  popular 
work  is  undoubtedly  the  Hindu  Theatre,  in  which  his  true 
poetic  taste  and  feeling  enabled  him  to  do  full  justice  to  the 
masterpieces  of  the  Indian  drama.  This  work  has  just  been 
re-printed,  and  it  is  not  likely  to  be  soon  superseded  by  any 
future  scholar,  as  the  different  qualities  required  to  produce 



an  adequate  poetic  translation  are  very  rarely  combined  in 
one  person  as  they  were  in  Horace  Hayman  Wilson. 

In  Western  India  the  Kanliari  Caves  in  the  Island  of 
Salset  were  described  and  illustrated  by  Salt  as  early  as  1806, 
although  his  account  was  not  published  until  1819  in  the 
1st  volume  of  the  Bombay  Transactions.  In  the  same 
volume  appeared  Erskine’s  admirable  account  of  the 
elephanta  caves,  which,  however,  was  written  as  early  as  1813. 
Like  Buchanan  in  Bengal,  Erskine  anticipated  the  period 
when  vague  and  glowing  accounts  would  give  place  to 
accurate  descriptions  and  detailed  plans.  His  essay  on  the 
Elephanta  Caves  has  been  corrected  in  a few  points  by  suc- 
ceeding observers  ; but  it  is  still  the  best  account  that  we 
possess  of  those  interesting  Brahmanical  excavations.* 

In  the  3rd  volume  of  the  same  transactions,  Colonel 
Sykes  gave  the  first  description  of  the  Muhammadan  city  of 
Bijapur,  which  has  since  been  amply  illustrated  by  the 
drawings  of  Hurt  and  Cumming,  and  the  photographs  of 
Loch,  with  text  by  Meadows  Taylor  and  James  Eergusson. 
To  Colonel  Sykes  also  belongs  the  credit  of  a good  account 
of  Ellora,  which  had  been  previously  illustrated  by  the 
drawings  of  Wales  engraved  by  the  Eaniells. 

The  earliest  illustrations  of  Southern  India  we  owe  to 
Thomas  Eaniell,  who,  at  the  close  of  the  last  century,  visited 
Madras  and  made  several  admirable  drawings  of  the  seven 
pagodas  at  Mahamallaipur,  which  are  not  surpassed  by  the 
best  photographs.  About  the  same  time  Colonel  Colin 
Mackenzie  began  his  antiquarian  career  in  the  South,  which 
his  successive  positions  in  the  Survey  Department  enabled 
him  to  extend  successfully  over  the  greater  part  of  the 
peninsula.  His  collection  of  manuscripts  and  inscriptions  is 
unrivalled  for  its  extent  and  importance. t His  drawings  of 
antiquities  fill  ten  folio  volumes ; and  to  this  collection 
Mr.  Eergusson  was  indebted  for  several  of  the  most 

* A new  description  of  the  cave  temples  and  other  antiquities  of  Elephanta  is 
shortly  about  to  be  published  by  Mr.  J.  Burgess,  illustrated  with  plans  and  other  drawings, 
besides  thirteen  photographs.  As  Mr.  Burgess  has  already  proved  himself  a most  competent 
describer  of  Indian  antiquities  by  his  two  previous  works, — “ The  Temples  of  Kathiawar,” 
illustrated  by  forty-one  photographs,  and  the  “Temples  of  Satrunjaya,”  illustrated  by  forty- 
five  photographs,  his  new  work  on  Elephanta  will,  no  doubt,  be  a most  valuable  and  welcome 
addition  to  the  library  of  Indian  Archaeology. 

+ See  Taylor’s  Catalogue  of  the  Oriental  Collection  of  the  Library  of  the  College  of 
Fort  St,  George,  3 Vols.,  thick,  8vo. 



valuable  illustrations  of  bis  “ tree  and  serpent  worship.” 
Colin  Mackenzie  was  an  ardent  and  successful  collector 
of  archaeological  materials,  hut  he  was  not  an  archaeo- 
logist. He  could  dig  up  and  make  drawings  of  the  splendid 
sculptures  at  Dharanikotta,  but  he  could  neither 
restore  the  building,  nor  translate  the  inscriptions.  But, 
although  not  a writer  himself,  the  splendid  collection  of 
antiquities  which  he  left  behind  him  has  been  the  cause  of 
writing  in  others.  To  his  drawings  we  partly  owe  Pergus- 
son’s  “ tree  and  serpent  worship,”  and  to  his  collection  of 
manuscripts  and  inscriptions  we  are  indebted  for  the  greater 
part  of  what  we  at  present  know  of  the  early  history  of  the 
southern  portion  of  the  peninsula.* 

When  Horace  Wilson  left  India  in  1833  the  mantle  of 
Sanskrit  scholarship  fell  to  Hr.  Mill,  whose  acquaintance 
with  the  sacred  language  of  India  is  acknowledged  to  have 
been  as  profound  and  as  critical  as  that  of  his  three  great 
predecessors.  To  him  we  owe  the  translation  of  several 
important  inscriptions  ; and  his  early  departure  from  India, 
in  the  end  of  1837,  was  looked  forward  to  by  James  Prinsep 
as  a loss  that  was  not  likely  to  be  soon  supplied. 

But  a new  era  now  dawned  on  Indian  archaeology,  and 
the  thick  crust  of  oblivion,  which  for  so  many  centuries  had 
covered  and  concealed  the  characters  and  language 
of  the  earliest  Indian  inscriptions,  and  which  the  most 
learned  scholars  had  in  vain  tried  to  penetrate,  was  removed 
at  once  and  for  ever  by  the  penetrating  sagacity  and  intui- 
tive perception  of  James  Prinsep.  During  a great  part  of 
the  years  1836  and  1837,  the  most  active  period  of  his  career, 
I was  in  almost  daily  intercourse  with  him.  With  our 
mutual  tastes  and  pursuits  this  soon  ripened  into  the  most 
intimate  friendship.  I thus  had  the  privilege  of  sharing 
in  all  his  discoveries  during  their  progress.  The  matured 
results  will  be  found  in  the  pages  of  the  Bengal  Asiatic 
Society’s  Journal;  but  the  germs  of  his  discoveries  are 
related  in  his  letters  to  me,  sometimes  almost  in  the  same 
words  as  he  afterwards  made  use  of  in  the  journal,  but 
generally  in  the  more  familiar  language  of  friendly  corre- 

* See  Professor  Dowson’s  account  of  the  Southern  Kingdoms  in  the  Royal  Asiatic 
Society’s  Journal,  VIII.,  1 ; and  H.  H.  Wilson’s  Historical  Sketch  of  the  Kingdom  of 
Pandya  in  the  Royal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  III.,  pp.  199  & 387. 



Prinsep’ s first  great  work  was  tlie  partial  decipherment 
of  the  Arian  Pali  legends  of  the  Bactrian  Greek  coins,  and 
his  last  and  most  important  achievement  was  the  decipher- 
ment of  the  Indian  Pali  legends  of  the  coins  of  Surashtra, 
and  the  consequent  decipherment  and  translation  of  the 
still  earlier  edicts  of  Asoka  on  the  pillars  at  Delhi  and 
Allahabad.  In  both  of  these  achievements  the  first  step 
towards  discovery  was  made  by  others,  and  this  was  most 
freely  and  fully  acknowledged  by  Prinsep  himself.  Regard- 
ing the  decipherment  of  the  Arian  Pali  alphabet,  he  says — 
“ Mr.  Masson  first  pointed  out  in  a note  addressed  to  myself 
through  the  late  Dr.  Gerard,  the  Pehlvi  signs  which  he  had 
found  to  stand  for  the  words  Menandrou,  A'pollodotou , 
Ermaiou , Basileos,  and  Soteros.  When  a supply  of  coins 
came  into  my  hands,  sufficiently  legible  to  pursue  the 
enquiry,  I soon  verified  the  accuracy  of  his  observation, 
found  the  same  signs  with  slight  variation  constantly  to 
recur,  and  extended  the  series  of  words  thus  authenticated 
to  the  names  of  twelve  kings,  and  to  six  titles  or  epithets. 
It  immediately  struck  me  that  if  the  genuine  Greek  names 
were  faithfully  expressed  in  the  unknown  character,  a clue 
would  through  them  be  formed  to  unravel  the  value  of  a 
portion  of  the  alphabet,  which  might  in  its  turn  be  applied 
to  the  translated  epithets  and  titles,  and  thus  lead  to  a 
knowledge  of  the  language  employed.  Incompetent  as  I 
felt  myself  to  this  investigation,  it  was  too  seductive  not  to 
lead  me  to  a humble  attempt  at  its  solution.”* 

The  clue  pointed  out  by  Masson  was  eagerly  followed 
up  by  Prinsep,  who  successfully  recognized  no  less  than 
sixteen,  or  just  one-half  of  the  thirty-three  consonants  of 
the  Arian  alphabet.  He  discovered  also  three  out  of  the 
five  initial  vowels,  and  two  of  the  medials,  or  just  one-half 
of  the  vowels.  Here  his  progress  was  unfortunately  stopped 
by  sudden  illness;  and  he  was  soon  after  cut  off  in  the  very 
midst  of  his  brilliant  discoveries  leaving  the  task  to  be  slowly 
completed  by  others. 

In  the  May  number  of  his  journal  for  1837,  f Prinsep 
published  his  readings  of  the  legends  on  the  small  silver  coins 
of  Surashtra.  In  this  case  he  has  also  given  a brief  notice 

* Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1S35,  p 329. 
f Published  in  June  1837. 



of  the  steps  which  led  to  the  discovery ; hut  as  his  letters  to 
me  convey  a much  more  vivid  and  lively  account  of  the 
untiring  perseverance  which  secured  his  success,  I will 
give  a connected  version  of  the  discovery  in  his  own  spirited 
language  by  extracts  from  his  letters  : 

lltli  May  1837. — “ Here  are  two  plates  addressed  to  me 
by  Harkness  on  the  part  of  J.  It.  Steuart,  quarto  engravings 
of  28  Saurashtra  coins,  all  Chaitya  reverses,  and  very  legible 
inscriptions,  which  are  done  in  large  on  the  next  plate.  Oh  ! 
but  we  must  decipher  them  ! I’ll  warrant  they  have  not 
touched  them  at  home  yet.  Here  to  amuse  you  try  your 
hand  on  this”  (here  follows  a copy  of  three  of  the  coin 
legends,  with  the  letters  forming  the  words  Rajnah  and 
Kshatrapasa,  each  of  which  occurs  twice,  marked,  respec- 
tively, 1,  2,  3,  4,  5,  6,  shewing  that  he  had  begun  to  analyze 
them  the  same  day). 

IWi  May,  7 o'clock,  a.  m. — “ You  may  save  yourself 
any  further  trouble.  I have  made  them  all  out  this  very 
moment  on  first  inspection.  Take  a few  examples  (here 
follow  both  the  original  legends  and  the  Nagari  renderings  j 

1 to  4 — Raja  Krittamasa  Rudra  Sahasa  Swami  Jahatama 


5 to  8 — j Raja  Krittamasya  Sagadamta  Raja  Rudra  Sahasa 


And  thus  every  one  of  them  gives  the  name  of  his  father  of 
blessed  memory,  and  we  have  a train  of  some  eight  or  ten 
names  to  rival  the  Guptas  !!  Hurra  ! I hope  the  chaps  at 
home  wont  seize  the  prize  first.  No  fear  of  Wilson  at  any 
rate  ! I must  make  out  a plate  of  the  names  on  ours  added 
to  Steuart’s,  and  give  it  immediate  insertion.  It  is  marvel- 
lously curious  that,  like  the  modern  Sindhi  and  Multani, 
all  the  matras,  or  vowels,  are  omitted,  and  the  Sanskrit 
terminations  sya,  &c.,  pali  or  vernacularized.  This  confirms 
the  reading  which  I had  printed  only  a day  or  two  ago, 
Vijaya  Mitasa  for  Mitrasya , of  Mithra,  identifying  him  and 
the  devise  with  our  Okpo  bull  coin ! Bravo,  we  shall 
unravel  it  yet.” 

Here  we  see  that,  although  he  had  mastered  the  greater 
part  of  these  legends  almost  at  first  sight,  yet  the  readings 




of  some  of  the  names  were  still  doubtful.  But  two  days 
later  he  writes  as  follows  : 

Sunday  (postmark,  May  14,  1837). — “Look  into  your 
cabinet  and  see  what  names  you  have  of  the  Saurashtra 
series.  Steuart’s  list  is  as  follows  : 

Bajas  Rudra  Sah,  son  of  Swdmi  Jcinadama. 

„ Atri  Rcimd  „ Rudra  Sah. 

& c.,  &c. 

“The  Sanskrit  on  these  coins  is  beautiful,  being  in  the 
genitive  case  after  the  Greek  fashion.  We  have  Rajnya  for 
Raja , Atri-Ramnah  for  A tri-Rama,  Vira-Rdmnah  for  Vira- 
Rdma,  Viswa  Sdhdsya  for  Viswa  Saha,  which  are  all  con- 
firmed by  the  real  name  losing  the  genitive  affix  when 
joined  to  putrasya. 

“ I have  made  progress  in  reading  the  Peacock  Saurasli- 
trans — 

Sri  bama  saga  deva  jayati 

• Jcramaditya  paramesa. 

“ Chulao  bhai,  juldee  puhonchoge  ! ”* 

In  these  lively  letters  we  see  that  the  whole  process  of 
discovery  occupied  only  three  days,  from  the  first  receipt  of 
Steuart’s  plates  to  the  complete  reading  of  all  the  legends. 
Nothing  can  better  show  the  enthusiastic  ardour  and  un- 
wearying perseverance  with  which  he  followed  up  this  new 
pursuit  than  these  interesting  records  of  the  daily  progress 
of  his  discoveries.  When  I recollect  that  I was  then  only 
a young  lad  of  twenty-three  years  age,  I feel  as  much  wonder 
as  pride  that  James  Prinsep  should  have  thought  me  worthy 
of  being  made  the  confidant  of  all  his  great  discoveries. 

But  the  decipherment  of  the  legends  on  the  Saurashtran 
coins  was  but  the  precursor  of  a still  more  important  dis- 
covery. Success  only  seemed  to  inspire  James  Prinsep  with 
fresh  ardour.  No  difficulty  daunted  his  enthusiasm,  and  no 
labour  tired  his  perseverance.  Only  a few  years  previously 
he  had  analyzed  the  characters  of  Samudra  Gupta’s  inscrip- 
tion on  the  Allahabad  pillar,  and  had  distinguished  the 

* This  is  the  common  exclamation  of  palki  bearers  to  encourage  one  another — “ Go  on 
brother,  we  shall  soon  get  there  1 ” 



attached  vowels,  «,  e , i , and  u;  but  the  long  £he  mistook 
for  o.  At  that  time  he  had  despaired  of  reading  these  old 
inscriptions,*  from  “ want  of  a competent  knowledge  of  the 
Sanskrit  language.”  But  his  present  success  stimulated 
him  to  renew  his  former  attempt.  Fortunately  just  at  this 
time  he  received  a number  of  short  inscriptions  from  the 
great  stupa  at  S&nchi  near  Bhilsa.  These  he  read  almost 
at  a glance  with  the  exception  of  two  or  three  letters,  which, 
however,  soon  yielded  to  his  perseverance.  He  then  pro- 
ceeded to  examine  the  inscriptions  on  the  Delhi  pillar,  and 
at  once  read  the  opening  sentence  without  any  difficulty  or 

Prinsep’s  final  readings  of  the  Saurashtran  coin  legends 
was  announced  to  me  on  the  14th  May,  and  this  later  dis- 
covery of  the  still  older  inscriptions  of  the  Sanchi  Stupa 
and  Delhi  pillar  was  completed  before  breakfast  on  23rd 
May,  or  only  nine  days  later.  His  formal  account  of  the 
discovery  is  given  in  the  journal;  f but  his  brief  announce- 
ment to  me  is  very  interesting,  as  it  shows  that  he  had  at 
once  determined  to  attempt  the  translation  of  the  whole  of 
Asoka’s  edicts.  I give  this  letter  entire. 

23 rd  May  1837. — “ My  dear  Cunningham, — Hors  du 
departement  de  mes  etudes  Sultan  Adil,  &c.  No,  but  I 
can  read  the  Delhi  No.  1,  which  is  of  more  importance, 
the  Bhilsa  inscriptions  have  enlightened  me.  Each  line 
is  engraved  on  a separate  pillar  or  dhioaja.  Then,  thought 
I,  they  must  be  gifts  of  private  individuals,  whose  names 
will  be  recorded.  All  end  in  ddnam — that  must  mean  * gift, 
or  given,’  ddnam — genitive  must  be  prefixed.  Let’s  see. 

Isa-palitasa-cha  Samanasa-cha  ddnam. 

“ The  gift  of  Isa-Palita  (protected  of  God)  and  of 

Sdmanerasa  Aheyakasa  Sethinon  ddnam 

“ The  gift  of  Samanera  and  Abeyaka  Sethi. 

* See  Journal  of  Bengal  Asiatic  Society,  1834,  p,  117,  and  compare  1837,  p.  452. 

+ In  Bengal  Asiatic  Seciety’s  Journal,  1837,  p.  460. 

£ This  was  an  expression  by  the  famous  French  academician,  Baoul  Rochette,  regarding 
the  Arian  legends  of  the  Bactrian  coins.  It  tickled  Prinsep’s  fancy  particularly  ; and  he 
was  frequently  quoting  it.  In  the  present  instance  I had  sent  him  a Muhammadan  coin  and 
asked  if  he  could  read  it.  Instead  of  saying  no,  he  quoted  Raoul  Rochette, 



Ruddha-palitasa  lichhunon  dunam. 

“ The  gift  of  the  protected  of  Buddha,  the  Lichhun&n.* 

Vijigatasa  danam. 

“ Eh  ? will  not  this  do  ? and  the  pillar  inscription 

Devdnam  jpiya  piyadasi  Raja  hevam  ahd. 

“ The  most  particularly-beloved-of-the-gods  Baja  de- 
clareth  thus. 

“ I think  with  Batna  Pala,  whom  I shall  summon,  we 
shall  he  able  to  read  the  whole  of  these  manifestoes  of  the 
right  faith — Buddha’s  bulls.  Will  send  plates  after  breakfast. 

“ Yours, 

" J.  P.  ” 

The  formal  announcement  of  this  discovery  was  made  in 
the  June  number  of  the  journal  which  was  published  in  July, 
by  which  Prinsep  had  recognized  the  true  values  of  all  the 
letters  which  he  had  yet  found,  and  the  old  alphabet  was 
complete  with  the  exception  of  the  very  rare  letters  gh  and 
jli,  and  the  gutteral,  palatal,  and  cerebral  n’s. 

To  Professor  Lassen  belongs  the  honor  of  having  been 
the  first  to  read  any  of  these  unknown  characters.  In  the 
previous  year,  1836,  he  had  read  the  Indian  Pali  legend  on 
the  square  copper  coins  of  Agathokles  as  Agathukla  Raja. f 
James  Prinsep  was  puzzled  by  findiDg  “that  nearly  the  same 
characters  appear  on  the  coins  of  Pantaleon.”  He  admit- 
ted, however,  that  “ it  might  be  possible  to  assimilate  the  word 
to  the  Greek  on  the  supposition  of  the  first  syllable  being 
wanting,”  thus  forming  talava.  On  referring  to  the  coin 
indicated  I find  that  the  first  letter  is  actually  wanting,  and 
that  he  had  read  the  three  letters  of  the  name  correctly. 
So  near  was  he  to  making  the  discovery  at  that  time  that  it 
would  probably  have  been  completed  at  once  had  there  been 
a perfect  coin  of  Pantaleon  to  refer  to  for  the  first  letter  of 
the  name. 

* This  word  should  be  Bhichhuno,  the  mendicant  monk,  but  Prinsep  had  not  then 
recognised  the  true  form  of  the  bh.  He  took  l for  bh,  and  when  he  came  to  the  true  l in 
laja,  he  read  the  word  as  Raja,  as  in  the  next  instance  which  he  gives  from  the  Delhi 

+ In  a letter  to  James  Prinsep  referred  to  in  the  Journal  of  Bengal  Asiatic  Society, 
1836,  p.  723. 



As  mentioned  in  his  letter  to  me,  Prinsep  had  at  once 
invited  Ratna  Pala,  the  Pali  scholar,  to  assist  him  in  reading 
the  inscription,  and  with  his  aid  he  was  able  to  translate  at 
once  several  important  passages,  such  as,  “ in  the  twenty- 
seventh  year  of  my  reign.”  So  unremitting  was  his  industry 
and  so  rapid  his  intuitive  perception,  that  he  had  finished  his 
translation  by  the  end  of  July,  and  the  complete  version 
appeared  in  the  journal  for  that  month,  which  was  published 
in  the  middle  of  August. 

Coins  and  inscriptions  now  poured  in  upon  him  so  fast 
from  all  parts  of  India  that  much  of  his  valuable  time  was 
now  occupied  in  private  correspondence,  and  when  I left 
Calcutta  towards  the  end  of  October  1837,  he  was  working 
from  twelve  to  sixteen  hours  daily.  Much  of  his  time  was, 
of  course,  occupied  with  his  public  duties  as  Assay  Master  of 
the  Calcutta  Mint,  as  he  wrote  to  me,  “ my  whole  day  is 
consumed  at  the  scales.  What  a waste  of  precious 
moments  !” 

A few  days  after  my  departure  he  received  copies  of  the 
Udayagiri  and  Khandagiri  inscriptions  from  Kittoe,  and 
faithful  impressions  of  all  the  inscriptions  on  the  Allahabad 
pillar  from  Colonel  Smith.  With  all  his  wonted  industry 
and  enthusiasm  he  set  to  work  upon  these  new  records,  and 
was  able  to  give  a revised  translation  of  Samudra  Gupta’s 
inscription  in  the  November  number  of  his  journal,  and  a 
long  and  valuable  note  on  the  inscriptions  from  Udayagiri  and 
Khandagiri  in  the  December  number.  Yet,  in  spite  of  all 
these  labours,  so  little  conscious  did  he  feel  of  exhaustion  that 
he  wrote  to  me  on  “ December  27th,  7 a.  m.,  to  get  a new 
Gupta  inscription  for  the  January  Number  ! ! ” 

Prinsep  now  took  up  the  rock-inscriptions  of  Asoka, 
and  in  a postscript  to  a letter  of  12th  February  1838,  he  said 
to  me  “ dont  expect  me  to  write  again  for  a long  spell.  I 
must  set  to  work  on  the  Girnari.”  But  on  the  3 rd  March 
I heard  from  him  again  that  he  had  “ made  une  decouverte 
epouvantable ! no  less  than  the  treaty  (an  article  at  least) 
between  Antiochus  and  Sophagasenas.  Shall  I leave  you  to 
guess  how,  where,  and  when  ? No,  hut  keep  it  secret  till  I an- 
nounce it  at  the  Society.  I have  happily  discovered  that 
many  of  the  edicts  at  Gujarat  and  Cuttack  are  verbatim  the 
same.  Among  them  is  one  announcing  the  establishment 



of  a medical  arrangement  for  men  and  animals.”  This  dis- 
covery was  announced  to  the  Asiatic  Society  on  the  7th 
March,  and  published  in  the  February  number  of  the 

As  Prinsep  proceeded  with  his  examination  of  the  rock- 
inscriptions,  he  discovered  the  names  of  Ptolemy,  Antigonus, 
and  Magas,  in  addition  to  a second  mention  of  Antiochus. 
He  had  previously  felt  the  want  of  a good  impression  of  the 
Girnar  inscription,  but  this  brilliant  discovery  made  him 
still  more  anxious  to  obtain  a complete  and  correct  copy. 
After  thinking  over  the  matter  for  some  time,  it  seemed  that 
the  surest  and  quickest  way  was  to  address  the  Governor 
General  on  the  subject,  which  was  accordingly  done  at  once, 
as  explained  in  the  following  letter  to  me  : 

28 th  March  1838. — “ In  the  enthusiasm  of  the  moment 
I took  up  my  pen  and  addressed  the  enclosed  bold  petition  to 
Lord  Auckland,  which,  on  sober  reflection,  I am  afraid  of 
sending,  lest  I should  be  thought  presumptuous  in  imagining 
others  care  as  much  about  old  inscriptions  as  I do  ! I therefore 
enclose  it  to  you  instead  that  you  may  act  upon  it  as  you 
may  find  a fit  occasion.  The  passage  in  the  14th  edict  is 
much  mutilated,  and  I long  for  a more  correct  copy.  * * 

It  really  becomes  interesting  to  find  Egypt  and  Ptolemy 
known  to  Asoka ! I must  give  you  the  real  text”  (here 
follows  the  text  in  the  original  Pali  characters,  which  I 
give  in  italic  letters  with  Prinsep’s  interlinear  transla- 
tion) : 

Yona  raja  'par an  clia  tena  Chaptaro 
Greek  King  furthermore  by  whom  the  Gypta  Tulamayo  cha  Antigona  clia  Mag  a cha, 
Kajas,  Ptolemy  and  Antigonus  and  Magas  and 

* * * savata  Devdnampiyasa 

* * * everywhere  beloved’s 

Dhammanusasti  anuhatate  yata  pajati 
Keligious  precept  reaches  where  goes. 

Some  doubt  about  the  Ptdro  rajano,  or  Chaptaro,  which  may 
be  read  chat ivaro  rajano,  ‘ the  four  kings Ptaro , the  Pta 
or  Ptlia  (worshipping)  kings,  Guptaro,  or  Chaptaro,  rajano , 
the  ‘ Koptic  or  Aegyptic  kings  but  the  name  of  Magas  is 
so  distinct  that  I give  up  the  four  kings  in  favor  of  Egypt. 



ct  I have  no  time  to  expatiate  hereupon.  I shall  publish 
in  the  next  journal,  although  probably  I shall  he  forced  to 
alter  my  Antiochus  the  Great  theory  to  the  contemporary 
Antiochus  of  Ptolemy  Philadelphia  (247  b.  c.),  in  whose 
time  Magas  held  part  of  Egypt  (Cyrene),  and  whose  period 
agrees  better  with  Asoka’s  reign.  Hurrah  for  inscriptions  ! ” 

Prinsep’s  hold  appeal  to  the  head  of  the  Government 
was  of  course  successful,  for  Lord  Auckland  was  a liberal 
patron  of  both  literature  and  science.  The  Governor  of  Bombay 
was  accordingly  requested  to  depute  a qualified  officer  for  the 
purpose  of  taking  & facsimile  of  the  inscriptions.*  The  new 
impressions  were  made  with  great  care,  but  they  did  not 
reach  Calcutta  until  after  Prinsep’s  departure.  I was  not  even 
aware  that  they  had  been  sent  to  Calcutta  until  last  January, 
when,  looking  for  some  of  Kittoe’s  inscriptions,  I stumbled 
on  the  Girnar  edicts  of  Asoka. 

In  the  meantime  Prinsep  continued  his  labours  by  pub- 
lishing a translation  of  the  Junagarh  inscription  of  Budra 
Hama  in  the  April  number  of  the  journal;  an  “ examination 
of  the  separate  edicts  at  Hhauli  in  Cuttack’’  in  the  May 
number ; translations  of  some  additional  short  records  from 
the  Sanchi  Stupa  near  Bhilsa  in  the  June  number;  and  the 
“ discovery  of  the  Bactrian  alphabet”  in  the  July  number  ; 
which  was  published  about  the  middle  of  August.  These  were 
his  last  contributions  to  the  Journal  of  the  Asiatic  Society  of 
Bengal. f 

After  his  revision  of  the  Bactrian  alphabet,  he  naturally 
turned  to  the  inscriptions  which  Ventura  and  Court  had  ex- 
tracted from  the  stupas  at  Manikyala,  and  which  Masson 
had  obtained  from  the  stupas  of  the  Kabul  Valley.  His 
attention  was  also  turned  to  the  reading  of  the  later  coins 
“ which  mark  the  decadence  of  Greek  dominion  and  Greek 
skill.  These  are  the  most  precious  to  the  student  of  Indian 
history.  Through  their  Xative  legends  we  may  yet  hope  to 
throw  light  on  the  obscure  age  of  Vikramaditya  and  the 
Scythian  successors  of  the  Greeks  on  the  north  of  India.” X 
So  important  did  he  consider  this  class  of  coins  that  he 

* See  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1S38,  p.  365. 

t These  different  articles  will  be  found  in  the  Journal  of  the  Bengal  Asiatic  Society  for 
1838,  pp.  364,  484,  562,  & 636. 

X Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1831,  p.  655, 



specially  invited  attention  to  them,  and  promised  to  return  to 
their  investigation,  his  text  being  “ those  coins  on  which  the 
Native  and  Greek  legends  differ,  or  record  different  names.” 

This  subject  still  occupied  his  attention  when  he  was 
overtaken  by  sickness  and  obliged  to  proceed  to  sea  for 
change  of  air.  He  was  “off  Kedgeree”  on  the  28th  Septem- 
ber 1838,  when  he  wrote  his  last  letter  to  me  to  acknowledge 
the  receipt  of  the  coins  which  I had  selected  from  Sir 
Alexander  Burnes’  new  collection  for  his  examination.  He 
was  disappointed  at  not  finding  any  new  names,  and  says 
“ I almost  fear  the  field  is  exhausted ; my  only  hope  is  of 
new  Spalahara  types  among  the  crowd  of  ‘frustes’  coins.” 
As  the  coins  of  Spalahara  belong  to  the  class  “ on  which 
the  Native  and  Greek  legends  differ,  this  passage  shows  that 
down  to  the  very  last  his  thoughts  were  engaged  on  the  com- 
pletion of  the  Bactrian  alphabet,  and  the  translation  of  the 
tope  inscriptions.  I also  draw  the  same  conclusion  from 
another  paragraph  of  the  same  letter  where  he  says,  “ I told 
you  (did  I not?)  that  Lassen  had  hit  upon  the  exact  key  to 
the  Bactrian  alphabet  I have  made  use  of.” 

His  trip  to  sea  did  him  no  good,  as  he  wrote  to  me  that 
he  “ never  was  so  idle,  so  listless,  or  so  headachey  in  his 
life  ; ” and  after  a long  and  amusing  account  of  all  the  sur- 
rounding discomforts,  he  exclaims  “ Oh ! the  pleasures  of 
running  down  to  the  Sandheads  for  a week  to  restore  the 
health  ! ” He  longed  “ to  get  home  to  his  own  desk”  in 
Calcutta,  where  he  hoped  to  find  that  Hr.  McLeod  had 
arrived  safe,  that  is,  with  the  mass  of  Burnes’  collection  of 

On  his  return  to  Calcutta  he  gradually  became  worse 
and  was  obliged  to  leave  India  in  the  end  of  October.  He 
was  in  a hopeless  state  when  he  reached  England  from  soften- 
ing of  the  brain,  and  after  lingering  for  about  a year  he  sank 
on  the  22nd  of  April  1840,  at  40  years  of  age.  Thus  died 
James  Prinsep  in  the  very  prime  of  life,  and  in  the  very 
midst  of  his  brilliant  discoveries.  When  we  remember  that 
he  was  only  just  thirty-nine  years  old  when  his  career  was 
suddenly  arrested  by  illness,  it  is  impossible  to  help  regret- 
ting that  he  was  not  spared  for  a few  years  longer  to  com- 
plete and  perfect  what  he  had  already  done,  and  perhaps  to 
add  fresh  laurels  to  his  fame  by  further  discoveries.  But 



James  Prinsep  had  done  his  work  ; for  all  his  brilliant  dis- 
coveries, which  would  have  been  the  labour  of  ten  or  a dozen 
years  to  most  other  men,  were  made  during  the  last  three 
years  of  his  career ; and  although  he  was  still  young  in  years, 
lie  had  already  done  the  work  of  a good  old  age.  The  career 
of  James  Prinsep  has  been  fitly  and  eloquently  described  by 
his  friend  Dr.  Hugh  Falconer,  who  knew  him  well.  Prom 
this  able  sketch  I extract  the  following  appreciative  notice 
of  Prinsep’s  rare  talents  : “ Of  his  intellectual  character  the 

most  prominent  feature  was  enthusiasm — one  of  the  prime 
elements  of  genius ; a burning  irrepressible  enthusiasm,  to 
which  nothing  could  set  bounds,  and  which  communicated 
itself  to  whatever  came  before  him.  The  very  strength  of 
his  mental  constitution  in  this  respect  was  perhaps  opposed 
to  his  attaining  the  excellence  of  a profound  thinker  ; it  led 
him  to  be  carried  away  frequently  by  first  impressions,  and 
to  apply  his  powers  to  a greater  range  of  subjects  than  any 
human  mind  can  master  or  excel  in.  To  this  enthusiasm 
was  fortunately  united  a habitude  of  order,  and  power  of 
generalization,  which  enabled  him  to  grasp  and  comprehend 
the  greatest  variety  of  details.  His  powers  of  perception 
were  impressed  with  genius — they  were  clear,  vigorous, 
and  instantaneous.”* 

Dr.  Falconer  formed  a true  and  just  estimate  of  Prin- 
sep’s powers  of  perception,  which  were  equally  remarkable 
for  their  vigour  and  their  instgditaneousness.  The  quickness 
of  his  perception  was  indeed  wonderful,  so  that  many  of  his 
discoveries  may  be  said  literally  to  have  flashed  upon  him  ; or, 
as  he  himself  describes  one  of  them  in  a letter  to  me,  “ like 
inspiration,  or  lightning,  or  Louisa’s  eyes,  the  light  at  once 
broke  upon  me.”t  But  the  great  point  in  Prinsep’s  character 
f was  his  ardent  enthusiasm,  which  charmed  and  melted  all  who 
came  in  contact  with  him.  Even  at  this  distance  of  time, 
when  a whole  generation  has  passed  away,  I feel  that  his 
letters  still  possess  the  same  power  of  winning  my  warmest 
sympathy  in  all  his  discoveries,  and  that  his  joyous  and 
generous  disposition  still  communicates  the  same  contagious 
enthusiasm  and  the  same  strong  desire  to  assist  in  further 

* Extracted  from  the  Colonial  Magazine  for  December  1840,  by  Mr.  E.  Thomasin  his 
edition  of  Prinsep’s  “ Essays  on  Indian  Antiquities,” 

+ Letter  of  27tli  January  1838.  The  name  of  Louisa  is  written  in  Asoka  characters  as 



The  powerful  impulse  given  to  Indian  archaeology  hy 
James  Prinsep  was  produced  quite  as  much  by  the  enthu- 
siasm which  he  kindled  in  every  one  who  came  in  contact 
with  him,  as  by  his  translations  of  the  old  inscriptions  of 
Asoka,  which  gave  life  to  records  that  had  been  dead  for 
more  than  two  thousand  years,  and  that  now  form  our 
chief  land-marks  in  ancient  Indian  history.  The  impulse 
was  not  lost  after  his  death ; but  the  progress  of  research, 
which  during  his  life-time  had  been  conducted  as  one  great 
voyage  of  discovery  under  his  sole  command,  has  since 
been  limited  to  lesser  expeditions  in  various  directions.  As 
these  were  led  by  many  different  persons,  each  acting  inde- 
pendently, the  amount  of  progress  may,  perhaps,  seem  com- 
paratively little,  whereas  it  has  been  really  great,  and  only 
seems  little  because  the  work  actually  done  lias  been  very 
gradually  achieved  and  has  never  yet  been  summed  up  and 
gathered  together. 

Of  James  Prinsep’s  successors  during  the  last  thirty 
years,  the  most  prominent  have  been  James  Pergusson, 
Markham  Kittoe,  Mr.  Edward  Thomas,  and  myself,  in 
Northern  India ; Sir  Walter  Elliot  in  Southern  India;  and 
Colonel  Meadows  Taylor,  Dr.  Stevenson,  and  Dr.  Bhau  D&ji 
in  Western  India. 

Erom  the  foundation  of  the  Asiatic  Society  by  Sir 
William  Jones  in  1784  down  to  1834,  a period  of  just  half  a 
century,  our  archaeological  researches  had  been  chiefly  liter- 
ary, and,  with  a few  notable  exceptions,  had  been  confined  to 
translations  of  books  and  inscriptions,  with  brief  notices  of 
some  of  the  principal  buildings  at  Delhi  and  Agra  and  other 
well  known  places.  The  exceptions  are  several  valuable 
essays  by  Jones,  Wilford,*  Colebrooke,  and  Wilson,  on  the 
religion,  the  geography  and  the  astronomy  of  the  Hindus, 
which  have  already  been  noticed.  These  early  labourers 
may  be  called  the  Closet  or  Scholastic  Archaeologists.  The  tra- 
vellers of  their  day  gave  glowing  accounts  of  the  wonders 
of  Ellora,  of  the  massive  grandeur  of  the  Kutb  Minar,  and 
of  the  matchless  beauty  of  the  Taj  Mahal  at  Agra.  But  all 
was  vague  and  indefinite.  There  were  but  few  measurements 
and  no  plans.  True  history  was  then  but  little  known,  and 

* I consider  VVilford’s  essays  valuable  in  spite  of  their  wild  speculations,  as  they  con- 
tain much  information  and  undigested  learning,  in  which  important  facts  and  curious 
classical  references  will  be  found  imbedded  in  a mass  of  crude  speculation. 



the  lying  gabble  of  Brahmans,  which  connected  every  place 
with  the  wanderings  of  Kama  or  the  exile  of  the  fivePandus, 
was  accepted  as  the  real  voice  of  genuine  tradition. 

But  a new  era  opened  for  Indian  archaeology  in  1834, 
when  James  Prinsep  gave  to  the  world  the  first  results  of 
Masson’s  researches  in  the  Kabul  valley,  and  of  Ventura’s 
and  Court’s  explorations  in  the  Panjab,  followed  immediately 
by  my  own  excavation  of  the  stupa  at  Sarnath,  Banaras, 
and  of  the  ruins  around  it.  Pacts  now  poured  in  rapidly, 
but  though  many  in  number,  they  were  still  bare  and  uncon- 
nected facts,  mere  fossil  fragments  of  the  great  skeleton  of 
lost  Indian  history.  The  full  skeleton  has  not  yet  been  set 
up;  but  many  of  its  members  are  now  almost  complete,  and 
we  have  acquired  a very  fair  knowledge  of  the  general  out- 
line and  of  the  various  forms  which  it  has  assumed  at  dif- 
ferent periods.  Por  this  result  we  are  much  indebted  to 
men  who  are  not  Sanskrit  scholars,  and  whose  success  has 
been  achieved  by  actual  measurements  and  laborious  explo- 
rations in  the  field,  combined  with  patient  research  and 
studious  investigation  in  the  closet.  During  James  Prinsep’s 
life-time,  the  materials  collected  by  these  “ field  archaeolo- 
gists,” or  “travelling  antiquarians”  as  he  called  them, 
were  all  made  over  to  him,  but  since  his  death,  each  observer 
has  worked  independently  in  his  own  line,  and  has  published 
separately  the  results  of  his  own  labours. 

Amongst  the  foremost  and  most  successful  of  the  later 
archaeologists  is  my  friend  James  Pergusson,  whose  masterly 
works  on  Indian  architecture  are  the  result  of  extensive 
travels  through  a great  part  of  India,  undertaken  for  the 
express  purpose  of  studying  this  important  and  interesting 
subject.  It  is  entirely  his  own,  and  I trust  that  he  may 
shortly  be  able  to  fulfil  his  long-cherished  project  of  publish- 
ing an  illustrated  history  of  Indian  architecture,  such  as 
he  only  can  give  us. 

Mr.  Pergusson’s  first  publication  was  an  account  of  the 
“ rock-cut  temples  of  India,  1845,  in  which  he  gives  a detailed 
account  of  all  the  groups  of  caves  that  were  then  known, 
and  endeavours  to  fix  their  approximate  dates  by  differences 
of  style  and  other  distinctive  characteristics.  This  rule  is 
rigorously  true  in  principle  ; but  to  make  its  results  of  any 
value,  it  is  absolutely  necessary  that  we  should  have  at  least 



a few  fixed  stand-points  of  known  dates  for  comparison. 
Thus  we  may  he  quite  certain  that  any  temple  B is  an  im- 
provement on  A,  and  is  less  advanced  than  C ; and  we  con- 
clude accordingly  that  it  i^  of  intermediate  age  between  A 
C.  But  if  the  dates  of  A and  C are  both  unknown,  our 
deduction  is  comparatively  of  little  value  ; and  even 
if  we  should  know  the  date  of  C,  any  deduction  as  to  the 
date  of  B will  be  liable  to  at  least  half  the  amount 
of  error  in  the  assumed  date  of  A.  No  one  is  more  fully 
aware  of  this  than  Mr.  Eergusson  himself,  as  he  admits  that 
his  conclusions  “ have  been  arrived  at  almost  entirely  from  a 
critical  survey  of  the  whole  series,  and  a careful  comparison 
of  one  cave  with  another,  and  with  the  different  structural 
buildings  in  their  neighbourhood,  the  dates  of  which  are  at 
least  approximately  known.”*  But  I think  that  he  is  in- 
clined to  overrate  the  value  of  these  critical  deductions, 
when  he  says  that  “ inscriptions  will  not  certainly  by  them- 
selves answer  the  purpose and  he  gives  in  proof  of  this 
assumption  the  fact  that  there  is  a comparatively  modern 
inscription  in  the  Ganes  Gumpha  Cave  at  Udayagiri.  But 
what  proof  have  we  that  many  of  the  caves  were  not  origi- 
nally quite  plain  like  those  of  Barabar,  and  that  the  orna- 
mentation is  not  the  work  of  a much  later  age  ? I differ 
from  Mr.  Eergusson  on  this  point,  as  I consider  that  inscrip- 
tions are,  beyond  all  doubt,  the  most  certain  and  the  most 
trustworthy  authority  for  determining  the  dates  of  Indian 
monuments,  whether  buildings  or  caves.  I freely  admit  the 
corroborative  value  of  architectural  evidence  when  it  is 
founded  on  ascertained  dates ; but  when  it  is  unsupported 
by  inscriptions,  I look  upon  it,  in  the  present  state  of  our 
knowledge,  as  always  more  or  less  uncertain,  and,  therefore, 

The  best  proof  which  I can  give  of  the  weakness  of 
Mr.  Bergusson’s  argument,  in  the  present  state  of  our  know- 
ledge, is  to  quote  the  dates  which  he  has  deduced  for  the 
well-known  caves  of  Kanliari  in  Salset,  which  he  assigns 
as  follows  : “ Birst  those  in  the  ravine  in  the  fourth  or  fifth 
century,  those  last  described,  with  those  on  each  side  of  the 
great  cave,  probably  at  least  a century  later  ; then  the  great 
eave.”f  Now  the  inscriptions  in  the  Kanliari  caves  are  very 

* Rock-cut  Temples  of  India,  p.  2. 
+ Rock-cut  Temples  of  India,  p.  39. 



numerous ; and  though  there  are  a few  mediaeval  records,  yet 
any  evidence  of  late  date  which  they  might  he  supposed  to 
afford  is  utterly  annihilated  hy  the  presence  in  the  same 
caves  of  much  older  inscriptions  of  the  same  style  and 
character  as  the  mass  of  the  Kanhari  records,  which  are  cer- 
tainly not  later  than  the  Gupta  inscriptions  of  Northern 
India.  In  fact,  one  of  them  gives  the  date  of  30  of  the  SaJca- 
ditya-Mla,  or  A.  D.  108.  I have  copied  part  of  the  inscrip- 
tion in  the  great  cave  with  my  own  hand,  and,  after  com- 
paring my  copy  with  that  of  Mr.  "West,  I can  see  no  dif- 
ference of  age  between  the  characters  used  in  the  great 
cave  and  those  in  the  other  caves.  I therefore  refer  the 
great  mass  of  the  Kanhari  inscriptions  to  the  first  and  second 
centuries  of  the  Christian  era,  so  that  there  is  a difference 
of  at  least  four  centuries  between  Mr.  Fergusson’s  mean 
date  and  mine. 

The  Karle  caves  Mr.  Fergusson  is  inclined  to  assign 
to  the  first,  or  even  the  second  century  before  Christ.*  One 
of  the  caves  is  certainly  older  than  the  Christian  era,  as  it 
possesses  an  inscription  of  the  great  Satrap  King  Nahapana.f 
But  there  are  two  others  of  King  Pudumayi,  the  son  of 
Yasithi,  whom  I place  in  the  beginning  of  the  second  century 
of  the  Christian  era,  hut  whom  Mr.  Fergusson  assigns  to  the 
middle  of  the  fourth  century,  although  in  his  chronology 
he  admits  that  Ananda,  also  a son  of  Yasithi,  and  therefore 
most  probably  a brother  of  Pudumayi,  and  the  founder  of  one 
of  the  gateways  of  the  Great  Sanchi  Tope,  lived  towards  the 
end  of  the  first  century. 

I have  entered  thus  fully  into  the  question  of  the  dates 
of  the  Western  Caves,  partly  lest  my  silence  should  be 
looked  upon  as  acquiescence  in  Mr.  Fergusson’s  conclu- 
sions, l and  partly  out  of  deference  to  his  deservedly  high 
name  and  well-earned  reputation  as  an  earnest  and  able 
enquirer  into  Indian  History  and  Archaeology.  Mr.  Fer- 
gusson is  well  aware  that  I differ  from  him  on  many  points 

* Rock-cut  Temples  of  India,  pp.  30-34. 

f Journal,  Bombay  Asiatic  Society,  V. ; Karli  Inscription  No.  5,  for  Nahapana ; and 
Nos.  4 and  18  for  Pudumayi. 

I This,  indeed,  has  already  happened,  as  Mr.  C.  R.  Markham,  in  his  Memoir  on  the 
Archaeological  Survey,  p,  181,  concludes  that  Mr.  Fergusson’s  Rock-cut  Temples  of  India 
“ may  be  considered  as  having  placed  the  theory  of  the  age  and  uses  of  those  monuments 
on  a,  basis  of  certainty,  xchich  has  never  since  been  called  in  question.” 



of  early  Indian  chronology ; and  1 believe  that  by  thus  pub- 
licly stating  my  views  on  these  points,  we  shall  the  sooner 
arrive  at  the  truth,  as  probably  others  will  now  he  led  to 
think  upon  the  subject,  wffio  would  otherwise  perhaps  have 
passed  it  entirely  over  as  a matter  that  was  undisputed,  and 
therefore  finally  settled. 

In  his  next  work,  entitled  “ Picturesque  Illustrations 
of  Ancient  Architecture  in  India,”  Mr.  Fergusson  makes 
use  of  the  same  principles  of  characteristic  differences  and 
similarities  of  style  to  fix  the  dates  of  the  mediaeval  temples 
of  the  Brahmans  and  Jains.  Here  I agree  with  him 
throughout ; for  the  process  of  deduction  is  now  perfectly 
trustworthy,  being  founded  on  actual  dates,  as  there  is  a 
sufficient  number  of  structural  temples  of  the  Jains  and 
Brahmans  of  known  age  to  furnish  us  with  data  for  deter- 
mining very  closely  the  ages  of  uninscribed  buildings.  This 
is  specially  noteworthy  in  the  case  of  the  rock-cut  Brah- 
manical  temples  of  Dhamnar,  which,  from  their  general 
style,  Mr.  Fergusson  has  assigned  to  the  eighth  or  ninth  cen- 
tury,* a date  which  must  be  very  close  to  the  truth,  as  I 
found  a statue  in  one  of  the  smaller  temples  inscribed  with 
characters  which  certainly  belong  to  that  period.  The 
examples  of  Indian  architecture  given  by  Mr.  Fergusson 
in  this  work  are  very  fine  and  choice,  especially  the  rich 
temple  at  Chandravati,  which  I have  seen,  and  wffiich  I 
agree  with  him  in  thinking  “ the  most  elegant  specimen  of 
columnar  architecture  in  Upper  India.” 

In  his  “Handbook  of  Architecture  (1855)  he  has  given 
a classification  of  all  the  different  Indian  styles,  both  Hindu 
and  Muhammadan,  which  is  considerably  enlarged  and 
improved  in  his  later  work,  the  “ History  of  Architecture” 
(1867).  In  the  latter  we  have  the  matured  result  of  a 
long  and  critical  study  of  the  subject.  The  classification 
is  complete  and  comprehensive,  and  though  perhaps  excep- 
tion may  be  taken  to  one  or  twro  of  the  names,  yet  it  is 
difficult  to  find  others  that  wrould  be  better.  The  limited 
space  at  his  command  has  obliged  him  to  treat  each  different 
style  very  briefly,  hut  the  distinctions  are  so  broadly  and 
clearly  defined  in  the  typical  examples  selected  for  illustra- 
tion, that  I cannot  help  feeling  impatient  for  the  appearance 

* Rock.cut  Temples  of  India,  p.  44. 



of  liis  great  work,  the  “ Illustrated  History  of  Indian  Archi- 
tecture,” which  he  originally  projected  more  than  a quarter 
of  a century  ago,  and  for  which,  during  the  whole  of  that 
time,  he  has  been  assiduously  collecting  materials. 

Mr.  Pergusson’s  last  work,  named  “Tree  and  Serpent 
Worship”  is  the  most  sumptuously  illustrated  work  on 
Indian  antiquities  that  has  yet  been  published.  In  it  he 
gives  a description  of  the  two  richly-sculptured  Stupas  of 
Sanchi  and  Amaravati,  with  a profusion  of  excellent  illustra- 
tions from  Colonel  Maisey’s  accurate  drawings  and  Captain 
Waterhouse’s  photographs  of  the  former,  and  from  Colonel 
Mackenzie’s  drawings,  and  the  actual  bas-reliefs  of  the  latter 
which  are  now  in  London.  Mr.  Pergusson  has  accepted  my 
dates  for  the  Sanchi  Tope  and  its  gateways,  namely,  B.  C. 
250,  during  the  reign  of  Asoka  for  the  former,  and  the  first 
century  A.  D.  for  the  latter ; but  the  Amaravati  Tope  he 
places  three  hundred  years  later,  in  the  first  half  of  the 
fourth  century  A.  D.  I understand  that  he  has  been 
led  to  adopt  this  difference  of  age  chiefly  on  account  of  the 
difference  of  style  which  he  has  observed  in  the  sculptures  of 
the  two  monuments.  I must  confess  that  this  great  dif- 
ference of  style  is  not  palpable  to  me.  On  the  contrary,  from 
the  similar  dress  of  the  men,  and  the  similar  general  naked- 
ness of  the  women,  save  only  the  peculiar  belt  of  five  rows 
of  beads,  the  sculptures  of  the  two  monuments  appear  to  me 
to  he  of  much  the  same  age.  I draw  the  same  conclusion 
also  from  the  inscriptions  which  are  undoubtedly  of  the 
same  age  as  those  of  the  caves  of  Kanliari  and  of  the  Sanchi 
Tope  Gateways.  As  I have  already  pointed  out,  there  are 
in  the  Kanliari  caves  two  inscriptions  of  Pudumayi,  the  son 
of  Vasithi,  in  exactly  the  same  characters  as  those  of  Ananda, 
the  son  of  Vasithi,  on  the  south  gateway  of  the  Sanchi 
Tope.  I conclude,  therefore,  with  some  certainty,  that  Pudu- 
mayi and  Ananda  were  brothers  ; and  consequently  I refer 
all  the  inscriptions  of  the  King  Gotamiputra  Satakarni  and 
his  successors  Pudumayi  and  Yadnya  Sri  to  the  first  and 
second  centuries  A.  D.  As  by  far  the  greater  number  of  the 
Amaravati  inscriptions  are  in  exactly  the  same  characters,  it 
seems  almost  certain  that  they  must  belong  to  the  same  period. 
This  conclusion  is  strengthened  by  the  fact  that  Buddhist 
coins  of  all  these  three  Princes  have  been  found  at  Amara- 
vati, with  types  and  inscriptions  which  range  them  as 



contemporaries  of  the  Satrap  Chiefs  of  Surashtra.  Mr.  Fer- 
gusson  has  adopted  the  statement  of  the  Puranas,  that  the 
Andhras  ruled  over  Magadha  in  succession  to  the  Kanwas  ; 
but  this  position  is  quite  untenable,  as  we  know  from  Pliny 
that  at  this  very  time  the  Prasii,  that  is  the  people  of  Pala- 
saka  or  Magadha,  were  dominant  on  the  Ganges,  and 
possessed  an  army  six  times  greater  than  that  of  the  Andarae 

With  respect  to  the  title  of  this  last  work  of  Mr.  Fer- 
gusson, — “Tree  and  Serpent  Worship,” — I submit  that  it  is 
not  borne  out  by  the  illustrations ; and  further,  that,  as 
serpent-worship  was  antagonistic  to  Buddhism,  such  a title 
is  not  applicable  to  a description  of  the  religious  scenes 
sculptured  on  a Buddhist  Stupa.  I can  perceive  no  serpent- 
worship  in  these  illustrations.  On  the  contrary,  I find  that 
the  Nftgas  are  generally  doing  homage  to  Buddha,  in  perfect 
accordance  with  all  the  Buddhist  legends,  which  invariably 
represent  the  Nagas  as  at  first  the  bitter  enemies  of  Buddha. 
Afterwards,  when  converted  by  his  preaching,  they  became 
his  staunchest  adherents,  and  are  specially  stated  to  have 
formed  canopies  over  his  head  with  their  hoods  to  protect 
him  from  the  sun  and  rain.  The  presence  of  Nagas  in  the 
Amaravati  sculptures  is  only  natural,  as  the  king  of  the 
country  and  his  subjects  are  described  in  all  the  legends  as 
Nagas.  In  the  sculptures,  therefore,  the  king  and  his 
women  are  generally  represented  with  serpent  hoods ; but, 
as  far  as  I have  observed,  they  are  invariably  the  worshippers 
of  Buddha,  and  not  the  objects  of  worship. 

On  these  two  points  I am  sorry  to  be  obliged  to  differ 
from  Mr.  Fergusson.  But  neither  of  them  affects  the  main 
purpose  of  the  work,  which  is  devoted  to  the  illustration  and 
restoration  of  the  Amaravati  Tope.  This  work  he  has  done 
most  thoroughly,  and  I accept  his  restoration  as  almost 

Markham  Kittoe  was  already  known  for  his  architec- 
tural taste  by  his  design  for  the  little  church  at  Jonpur,  and 
his  drawings  of  Muhammadan  buildings,  when,  towards  the 
close  of  1836,  the  march  of  his  regiment  from  the  Upper 
Provinces  to  Medinipur  brought  him  through  Calcutta, 

* James  Prinsep  saw  that  these  Successive  dynasties  of  the  Puranas  must  have  been 
parallel  or  contemporary.— -Journal,  Bengal  Asiatic  Society,  1838,  p.  317, 



where  he  first  saw  James  Prinsep.  He  was  then  engaged 
in  the  preparation  of  a work,  which  apppeared  in  1838, 
under  the  title  of  “ Illustrations  of  Indian  Architecture.” 
The  work  was  chiefly  valuable  for  its  illustrations,  of  which 
many  have  now  been  superseded  by  photographs.  Kittoe’s 
antiquarian  zeal  and  architectural  knowledge  were  strong 
recommendations  to  James  Prinsep,  who  induced  him  to  pay 
a visit  to  the  Khandagiri  rock  to  examine  the  inscription  in 
old  Pali  characters,  of  which  Stirling  had  published  a poor 
and  imperfect  copy  in  the  Asiatic  Researches.  The  result 
was  an  excellent  copy  of  a very  important  inscription  of 
King  Aira,  and  the  discovery  of  one  of  Asoka’s  edicts  at 
Dhauli,  with  sketches  of  the  more  important  caves  and  prin- 
cipal sculptures. 

Kittoe’s  services  were  warmly  acknowledged  by  James 
Prinsep  in  the  Journal  of  the  Asiatic  Society,  and  also  in  a 
letter  to  me  of  4th  November  1837,  in  which  he  mentions 
“a  beautifully  illustrated  journal  from  poor  Kittoe,”  and 
begs  me  to  “ keep  an  eye  to  his  interests,  for  he  would  he 
an  invaluable  antiquarian  traveller.”  At  this  time  Kittoe 
was  temporarily  removed  from  the  army  for  bringing  indis- 
creet charges  of  oppression  against  his  Commanding  Officer, 
for  which  there  was  hut  little  foundation  save  in  his  own 
over-sensitive  disposition.  Through  Prinsep’s  influence  he 
was  appointed  Secretary  of  the  Coal  Committee,  which  led 
to  his  extended  tour  through  Orissa,  the  results  of  which 
were  published  in  the  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal  for 
1838  and  1839.  He  was  afterwards  restored  to  his  position 
in  the  army,  and  appointed  to  the  charge  of  one  of  the 
Divisions  of  the  High  Road  from  Calcutta  to  Bombay,  lead- 
ing through  Chutia  Nagpur. 

Por  several  years  he  was  employed  in  the  uncongenial 
work  of  a Road  Officer,  and  it  was  not  until  1846  that  he 
had  the  opportunity  of  returning  to  his  archaeological 
researches.  In  doing  so  he  felt  that  he  was  partly  carrying 
out  the  wishes  of  James  Prinsep,  “ who  oft  expressed  a wish 
that  he  should  ramble  over  the  district  of  Bihar,  and  cater 
for  him.”*  During  1846  and  1847,  he  accordingly  travelled 
over  a great  part  of  the  districts  of  Bihar  and  Shahabad, 
and  added  much  valuable  information  to  our  knowledge  of 

* Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1847,  p.  273. 




their  antiquities.  But  his  chief  aim  seems  to  have  been  to 
make  a large  collection  of  drawings  of  choice  specimens  of 
sculpture  with  a view  to  future  publication.  In  following  out 
this  plan  much  of  his  valuable  time  was  wasted  in  making 
drawings  of  sculptures  and  architectural  ornaments,  of 
many  of  which  photography  has  since  given  us  finer  and 
even  more  detailed  copies.  But  no  less  praise  is  due  to  him 
for  the  unwearied  industry  and  patience  with  which  he  per- 
formed his  self-appointed  task,  the  results  of  which  now 
form  a valuable  collection  of  about  one  hundred  and  fifty 
drawings  belonging  to  the  library  of  the  East  India 

About  this  time,  through  the  influence  of  Mr.  Thomason, 
Lieutenant-Governor  of*  the  North-Western  Provinces, 
Kittoe  was  appointed  “ Archseological  Enquirer”  to  Govern- 
ment, on  a salary  of  Rs.  250  a month.  Whilst  engaged 
on  this  work  he  was  requested  to  prepare  a design  for  the 
proposed  Sanskrit  College  at  Banaras.  His  design  was 
approved  ; and,  when  the  building  was  fairly  begun,  Kittoe 
was  obliged  to  reside  altogether  at  Banaras  to  superintend 
its  construction.  With  this  work  he  was  fully  occupied  during 
the  remainder  of  his  career,  his  only  archaeological  re- 
searches being  some  rather  extensive  excavations  at  Sarnath, 
where  he  uncovered  a complete  monastery,  and  added  con- 
siderably to  his  collection  of  sculpture  drawings.  The 
work  at  the  College  was  severe,  as  he  had  to  model  most  of 
the  mouldings  with  his  own  hands.  On  the  19th  May  1852, 
he  wrote  to  me  “ Oh  how  I wish  the  College  were  out  of 
hand,  that  I might  set  to  work  and  compile  my  drawings 
and  papers  into  some  shape.”  When  I saw  Kittoe  at 
Gwalior  in  September  1852,  he  spoke  despondingly  of 
himself.  His  health  was  evidently  much  impaired,  and  he 
complained  of  headache  and  want  of  appetite. 

He  was  sick  of  the  drudgery  of  the  college  work ; and 
in  the  beginning  of  1853  his  health  completely  broke  down, 
and  he  was  compelled  to  seek  for  change  of  air  in  England. 
On  the  2nd  of  Eebruary  he  gave  a lecture  in  Calcutta  before 
the  Asiatic  Society  on  the  antiquities  of  Sarnath,  and  exhi- 
bited to  the  meeting  his  collection  of  sculpture  drawings. 
The  voyage  to  England  did  him  no  good,  and  on  his  arrival 
he  was  so  ill  that  he  saw  no  one,  and,  as  one  of  his  friends 
informed  me,  “ he  went  straight  to  his  home  and  died”  in 



June  1853.  Like  Prinsep  lie  sank  from  overwork,  and  at 
about  the  same  age. 

As  a draughtsman  Kittoe  was  painstaking  and  accurate, 
and  therefore  always  trustworthy ; as  an  explorer,  he  was 
enthusiastic  and  indefatigable,  qualities  which  generally 
command  success ; hut  as  an  investigator,  he  was  wanting  in 
scholarship  and  faulty  in  judgment.  As  specimens  of  his 
defective  judgment,  I may  cite  his  continued  doubts  as  to 
the  identity  of  Asoka  and  Piyadasi,  and  his  serious  sugges- 
tion that  the  Barabar  Cave  inscription  of  Dasaratha,  which 
Prinsep  had  truly  assigned  to  the  historical  Dasaratha  of 
Magadha,  one  of  the  immediate  successors  of  Asoka,  might 
probably  be  referred  to  the  half  fabulous  Dasaratha  of 
Ayodhya,  the  father  of  Rama. 

Kittoe’s  chief  discoveries  were  limited  to  temples, 
sculptures  and  inscriptions,  and  I cannot  recal  a single 
locality  which  he  identified,  or  a single  historical  doubt 
which  he  settled,  or  a single  name  of  any  dynasty  which  he 
established.  His  discoveries  were  the  result  of  unwearying 
exploration,  and  not  the  fruit  of  mental  reasoning  and 
reflective  deduction.  Such  also,  when  his  career  was  draw- 
ing to  a close,  was  his  own  modest  estimate  of  himself.  On 
the  19th  May  1852  he  wrote  to  me  : “ Let  me  not  lead  you  to 
suppose  that  I claim  knowledge.  I am  woefully  deficient. 
I am  a self-educated  man,  and  no  Classic  or  Sanskrit  scholar ; 
I merely  claim  a searching  eye  and  mind,  and  a retentive 
memory  of  figure  and  fact,  and  place  or  position.  Hence 
my  great  success  in  finding  inscriptions  where  many  have 
searched  in  vain  ! — Cuttack  and  Gya  to  wit.”  This  estimate 
of  himself  seems  fully  to  justify  my  opinion  of  him,  while 
at  the  same  time  it  corroborates  the  prophetic  judgment  of 
James  Prinsep  that  Kittoe  would  make  “an  invaluable 
antiquarian  traveller.” 

The  principal  subject  which  has  engaged  the  attention 
of  Mr.  Edward  Thomas  is  the  History  of  India  as  illus- 
trated by  its  coins  and- inscriptions,  and  other  monuments. 
His  numerous  essays,  range  over  the  long  period  of  eighteen 
hundred  years,  from  the  establishment  of  the  Bactrian 
monarchy  in  B.  C.  246  to  the  final  extinction  of  the  Pathan 
empire  of  Delhi  on  the  accession  of  Akbar  in  A.  D.  1554. 
The  following  list  of  his  principal  essays  shews  the  extent 



and  variety  of  the  contribution  which  he  has  made  to  Indian 
archaeology  during  the  past  twenty  years. 

1.  1818 — Journal  of  Royal  Asiatic  Society,  Vol.  IX., — 
Coins  of  the  Hindu  Kings  of  Kabul. 

2.  1848 — Ditto  ditto,  Vol.  IX., — Coins  of  the  Kings  of 

3.  1850 — Ditto  ditto,  Vol.  XII., — Coins  of  the  Sail 
Kings  of  Saurashtra. 

4.  1855 — Journal,  Bengal  Asiatic  Society,  Vol.  XXIV., 
— On  the  Epoch  of  the  Gupta  Dynasty. 

5.  1855 — Ditto  ditto,  Vol.  XXIV., — On  the  Coins  of 
the  Gupta  Dynasty. 

6.  1855 — Ditto  ditto,  Vol.  XXIV., — On  ancient  Indian 

7.  1858 — Prinsep’s  Indian  Antiquities,  2 Vols.,  thick 
8vo  ; with  numerous  plates  of  coins,  and  many  able  in- 
dependent notices,  bringing  the  state  of  knowledge  in  each 
branch  up  to  the  date  of  publication. 

8.  1860 — Journal,  Royal  Asiatic  Society,  Vol.  XVII., — 
Supplementary  Notice  of  the  Coins  of  the  Kings  of  Ghazni. 

9.  1864 — Journal,  Bengal  Asiatic  Society,  Vol. 
XXXIV., — On  ancient  Indian  Weights  (continued  in  the 
same  journal  for  1835). 

10.  1865 — Ditto  ditto,  Vol.  XXXV., — On  the  identity 
of  Xandrames  and  Krananda. 

11.  1866 — Ditto  ditto,  Vol.  XXXVI., — The  Initial 
Coinage  of  Bengal. 

12.  1871 — Chronicles  of  the  Pathan  Kings  of  Delhi. 

On  all  these  different  periods  and  subjects  Mr.  Thomas 
has  thrown  a flood  of  light  by  his  accurate  observations  and 
critical  sagacity.  But  his  principal  researches  have  been 
directed  to  the  Muhammadan  History  of  India,  and  more 
especially  to  the  two  periods  of  the  Ghaznivide  and  Pathan 
dynasties.  Here  he  has  had  the  field  entirely  to  himself; 
and  to  his  critical  sifting  of  evidence  and  noteworthy 
accuracy,  we  are  mainly  indebted  for  the  clear  and  satis- 
factory settlement  of  the  chronology  of  the  Muhammadan 
kingdoms  of  Ghazni  and  Delhi.  He  has  also  initiated  the 
same  accurate  arrangement  of  the  chronology  of  the 



Patlian  kingdom  of  Bengal,  which  will  eventually  be 
completed  as  more  coins  and  inscriptions  are  brought  to 
light  and  made  available. 

The  greater  number  of  Mr.  Thomas’s  essays  have  been 
confessedly  limited  to  the  almost  technical  description  and 
illustration  of  various  important  series  of  oriental  coins. 
But  in  his  notes  and  independent  articles,  inserted  in  his 
edition  of  Prinsep’s  Essays,  and  more  particularly  in  his 
last  production, — the  “ Chronicles  of  the  Patlian  Kings  of 
Delhi,” — he  has  made  good  use  of  all  accessible  inscriptions, 
and  of  numerous  passages  of  historians  and  geographers, 
which  bear  upon  his  subject.  His  “leading  object,”  as  he 
himself  states,  “ has  been  to  collect  materials  for  history, 
in  the  form  of  documents,  which  it  was  primarily 
desirable  to  retain  in  their  most  authentic  form.”  This 
object  he  has  accomplished  in  the  most  complete  and  satisfac- 
tory manner;  and  the  future  historian  of  Muhammadan 
India  will  be  saved  much  of  the  weary  and  vexatious  trouble 
of  weighing  the  respective  values  of  conflicting  evidence,  and 
of  balancing  the  probabilities  of  opposing  dates.  All  this 
laborious  work  has  been  well  and  carefully  done  by  Mr. 
Thomas,  whose  critical  sifting  of  evidence,  and  able  scrutiny 
of  all  available  information,  have  effectually  winnowed 
I most  of  the  chaff  of  doubt  and  dispute,  and  left  little 
but  the  true  grains  behind. 

In  Madras  Sir  Walter  Elliot  completed  what  Colonel 
Mackenzie  had  left  undone.  Mackenzie’s  great  collection 
of  8,076  inscriptions  was  made  chiefly  in  the  Tamilian  pro- 
vinces to  the  south  of  the  Krishna  Biver,  while  Sir  Walter’s 
collection  of  595  inscriptions  was  formed  principally  in  the 
ancient  Karnata  country,  amongst  the  upper  branches  of  the 
Krishna.  His  first  contribution  to  Indian  archaeology  was 
a very  valuable  and  interesting  historical  sketch,*  founded 
solely  on  the  inscriptions  of  the  principal  dynasties  which 
had  ruled  over  the  countries  between  the  Narbada  and 
the  Krishna  for  nearly  eight  centuries.  Of  these  the  great 
Chalukya  family  was  the  oldest,  the  strongest,  and  the  most 
lasting ; and  its  line  has  since  been  traced  back  to  the  early 
part  of  the  fourth  century  by  the  discovery  of  other  inscrip- 
tions. Its  career  probably  began  in  A.  D.  318.  Eor  the 

* In  Royal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  IV.,  for  183G,  and  re-printcd  with  corrections 
in  the  Madras  Literary  Journal,  Vol.  VII.,  p.  190. 



early  history  of  the  northern  half  of  the  peninsula,  this 
invaluable  essay  is  our  principal,  and  indeed  almost  our 
only,  guide. 

Sir  Walter  has  also  illustrated  the  history  of  the 
Chalukyas  and  other  southern  dynasties  by  their  coins, 
which  he  was  the  first  to  arrange  systematically.  He  thus 
obtained  their  trustworthy  evidence  in  support  of  the  more 
extensive  data  supplied  by  the  inscriptions.  All  previous 
enquiries  had  been  contented  to  arrange  the  coins  accord- 
ing to  their  devices,  without  regard  to  their  age,  or  to 
the  localities  in  which  they  were  usually  found.  Thus,  all 
the  coins  bearing  the  type  of  an  elephant  were  assigned 
to  the  Gajapati  dynasty,  which  was  asserted  to  have  reigned 
over  Orissa ; all  those  with  a horse  to  the  Aswcipati  dynasty  ; 
those  with  the  figure  of  a man  to  the  Narapati  dynasty ; 
and  those  with  an  umbrella  to  the  Chhatrapati  dynasty. 
These  are  currently  believed  to  have  been  the  titles  of  four 
tributary  princes  who  held  the  four  chief  provinces  of 
Southern  India  under  the  rule  of  the  one  supreme  sove- 
reign of  Delhi.  The  single  omission  of  the  boar  of  the 
Chalukyas  is  fatal  to  this  neatly-contrived  scheme. 

In  Western  India  Colonel  Meadows  Taylor  has  chiefly 
confined  his  attention  to  the  mysterious  cromlechs  and  cairns, 
and  stone  circles,  of  which  he  himself  made  numerous  and 
important  discoveries  in  the  Shorapur  District.*  The  origin 
of  these  monuments  is  at  present  unknown.  Colonel  Taylor 
calls  them  pre-historic  remains,  and  attributes  them  to  the 
great  Turanian  or  Scythian  race  which  occupied  Southern 
India  before  the  immigration  of  the  Aryas.  “ Certain  it 
is,”  he  remarks,  “ that  in  the  purely  Aryan  and  Northern 
Provinces  of  India,  no  such  structures  have  been  found.”! 
But  this  is  a mistake,  as  they  have  already  been  found 
in  the  hilly  parts  of  the  districts  of  Delhi,  Mirza- 
pur,  and  Orissa,  and  I conclude  that  they  will  hereafter  be 
discovered  in  many  other  parts  of  Northern  India.  I am 
inclined  also  to  doubt  that  these  monuments  were  peculiar 
to  the  Turanian  races,  for  I look  upon  the  stone  colonnade 
that  surrounds  the  great  Sanchi  stupa  as  only  an  improved 
version  of  the  rude  stone  circle  enclosing  an  earthen 

* See  his  able  account  of  this  interestin';  subject  in  the  Journal  of  the  Etenological 
Society,  Vol.  I.,  p.  157.,  “ On  the  l’re-historic  Archaeology  of  India.’’ 

f “ Student’s  Manual  of  the  History  of  India,”  p.  40, 



tumulus  ; and  as  the  Sanclii  monuments  is  an  undoubted 
Aryan  structure,  the  probabilities  seem  to  be  rather  in 
favour  of  the  Aryan  origin  of  its  prototype,  than  that 
the  Aryas  borrowed  the  design  from  the  earlier  Turanian 
settlers.  This  however  is,  at  present,  a matter  of  opinion 
which  will  probably  be  settled  by  further  researches.  In  the 
meantime  the  public  is  deeply  indebted  to  Colonel  Taylor 
for  the  very  full  and  accurate  details  which  he  has  given  of 
the  early  stone  monuments  of  Southern  India. 

In  his  Student’s  Manual  of  Indian  History,  Colonel 
Taylor  has  assigned  the  building  of  the  second  tope  at 
Sanclii  to  Pushpamitra,  the  first  of  the  Sunga  dynasty  of 
Magadha,  whom  he  affirms  to  have  been  Buddhists,  and 
“ famous  for  their  religious  zeal  in  the  construction  of  reli- 
gious edifices  and  excavation  of  cave  temples.”*  Now,  this 
is  certainly  a mistake,  as  Pushpamitra  was  a noted  persecu- 
tor of  the  Buddhists,  and  is  recorded  to  have  offered  a reward 
of  one  hundred  dinars  for  the  head  of  every  Sramana.f 
As  Colonel  Taylor  rarely  quotes  authorities,  it  is  impossible 
to  trace  the  source  of  this  error.  I can  only  conjecture 
that  it  is  founded  on  a misreading  by  Dr.  Stevenson  of  one 
of  the  cave  inscriptions,  which  will  be  presently  noticed,  in 
which  he  identifies  a petty  Buddhist  chief,  NdyaJc,  named 
Agnimitra,  with  the  great  Sunga  King  of  Magadha,  who 
would  certainly  appear  to  have  been  a Brahmanist,  as  well 
as  his  father,  Pushpamitra.  £ 

To  the  Beverend  J.  Stevenson,  d.  d.,  we  owe  the  only 
series  of  translations  that  have  yet  appeared  of  the  numerous 
inscriptions  in  the  caves  of  Western  India.  These  were 
published  in  1857*  from  copies  of  the  inscriptions  prepared 
by  Lieutenant  Brett,  which,  though  carefully  and  laboriously 
made,  are  deficient  in  many  places,  and  are  not  sufficiently 
accurate  in  others  to  be  fully  relied  upon.  Por  these  reasons 
several  passages,  and  even  a few  wTtole  inscriptions,  were  left 
untranslated  by  Dr.  Stevenson,  whilst  others  were  insuffi- 
ciently or  incorrectly  rendered  by  him.  New  and  much  more 
accurate  copies  of  the  inscriptions  in  the  Kanhari  and  Nasik 
caves  have  since  been  published  by  Mr.  West,  but  even 

* Student’s  Manual  of  Indian  History,  page  54. 

+ Burnouf  “Introduction  h,l’  Histoire  du  Buddliisme  Indien,”  page  431. 

J See  the  drama  of  MtilaviMgniraitra  in  Wilson’s  Hindu  Theatre. 



these  arc  only  hand  copies,  carefully  reduced,  it  is  true,  by 
squares,  but  still  only  hand  copies,  and  not  facsimiles  or 
impressions.  I have  myself  visited  both  of  these  places, 
and  I can  state  that  I have  not  seen  any  inscriptions  that 
would  yield  better  impressions  than  the  great  Satrap  and 
Andhra  records  of  the  Nasik  caves.  The  most  beautiful 
and  perfectly  accurate  impressions  or  rubbings  of  these 
precious  records  might  have  been  made  by  Mr.  West  in  one- 
tentli  of  the  time  which  was  occupied  in  making  his  much 
less  trustworthy  hand  reductions. 

Taking  Dr.  Stevenson’s  translations  altogether,  there  is 
no  doubt  that  he  has  succeeded  in  giving  the  general  scope 
of  all  the  more  important  inscriptions,  and  has  thereby 
added  a very  valuable  amount  of  authentic  information 
to  the  scanty  records  of  early  Indian  history.  With  some 
of  the  shorter  inscriptions  he  has  been  less  successful ; for 
instance,  he  has  taken  Ddmildya  as  a masculine  name,  and 
identified  Ddmild  with  the  famous  Chanakya,  the  minister 
of  Chandra  Gupta  Maurya,  thus  ignoring,  not  only  the 
feminine  possessive  termination  in  aya,  but  also  the  pre- 
ceding feminine  word  Bhikhuniya,  or  “ mendicant  nun,” 
the  inscription,  in  fact,  being  the  simple  record  of  a gift  of 
the  female  mendicant  Ddmild*  In  a second  short  inscrip- 
tion, by  reading  Maliaravisa,  “of  the  emperor,”  instead  of 
Maharathisa , “ of  Maharashtra,”  he  identifies  the  Nayalc, 
or  “petty  chief,”  Agnimitra  of  Maharashtra  with  the  great 
King  Agnimitra  of  Magadha,  the  son  of  Pushpamitra,  the 
founder  of  the  Sunga  dynasty.f  Again,  in  his  anxiety  to 
obtain  some  name  that  would  help  to  fix  the  dates  of  these 
inscriptions,  he  has  identified  Sahara  with  Vikramaditya  by 
reading  Sakdri,  where  the  preceding  names  of  Nabliaga, 
Nahusha,  and  Janamejaya,  as  well  as  the  following  name  of 
Yayati,  should  have  shown  him  that  the  solar  hero  Sagara 
was  the  person  really  intended.  J 

* Historical  names  and  facts  contained  in  the  Kanhari  inscriptions. — Bombay  Journal, 
V.,  page  29,  No.  14,  Inscription  from  Kanhari. 

t Sahyadri  inscriptions. — Bombay  Journal,  V.,  page  152,  No.  1,  Inscription  from  Karle. 
$ On  the  Nasik  cave  inscriptions  (Bombay  Journal,  V.,  page  43,  No.  1 Inscription),  Dr. 
Bhau  Daji  has  adopted  this  erroneous  identification  of  Vikramaditya  in  his  Essay  on 
Kalidasa.  I pointed  out  Dr.  Stevenson’s  error  to  Mr.  Fergusson,  but  he  refers  to  it  as  if 
a Vikramaditya  was  mentioned  by  name. — See  his  Essay  on  Indian  Chronology,  page  52, 
note  1 (“  The  Vikram&ditya  mentioned  in  Gotamiputra’s  inscription  is  evidently,  from  the 
company  in  which  he  is  named,  of  pre-historic  antiquity”).  Mr.  Fergusson  must  have 
remembered  imperfectly  what  I told  him,  for  there  is  no  meutiou  whatever  of  any  Vikraina- 
ditya  in  Gotamiputra’s  N usik  inscription. 



To  Dr.  Stevenson  we  owe  the  first  real  progress  that 
was  achieved  since  Prinsep,  in  reading  the  numerical  figures 
of  these  old  inscriptions.  But  he  contented  himself  with 
noting  the  more  obvious  cyphers,  and  hastily  adopted  values 
for  others,  which  in  one  case  led  him  to  make  the  curious 
blunder  of  assigning  thirty-two  days  to  a fortnight.  This 
happened  from  reading  the  letter  y as  the  figure  for  30,  by 
which  he  changed  “ batiya  2”  into  “ bati  32.”* * * § 

Dr.  Stevenson  also  published  several  papers  on  the  early 
religion  of  the  Hindus  of  Southern  India,!  and  a single 
paper  on  the  Tithyas  or  Tirthakas  of  the  Buddhists,  whom 
he  identifies  with  the  Gymnosophists  of  the  Greeks,  and 
with  the  Digambara  sect  of  Jains.  $ These  papers  show 
much  patient  research  and  accurate  observation  in  a new 
and  interesting  field  of  inquiry,  and  lead  us  to  regret  that 
Dr.  Stevenson  should  have  been  cut  off  in  the  very  midst  of 
his  career,  just  when  his  judgment  had  become  mature, 
and  promised  to  guide  his  acknowledged  scholarship  to  use- 
ful results. 

Since  Stevenson’s  death  the  study  of  archseology  in 
Western  India  has  been  taken  up  ably  and  enthusiastically 
by  a Native  gentleman,  Dr.  Bhau  Daji,  whose  contributions 
to  the  Bombay  Journal  have  thrown  much  light  on  the  early 
history  of  the  northern  half  of  the  peninsula.  As  a scholar 
he  very  early  earned  the  thanks  of  all  students  of  Indian 
literature  and  history  by  his  essay  on  the  Poet  Kalidasa, 
and  by  his  translations  of  the  inscriptions  in  the  Ajanta 
Caves,  and  of  the  inscriptions  of  Budra  D&ma  and  Skanda 
Gupta  at  Junagarh.§  His  reputation  has  since  been  amply 
maintained  by  his  interesting  and  valuable  notice  of  the 
“ Inroads  of  the  Scythians  into  India,”  ||  and  by  his  discovery 
of  the  values  of  several  of  the  unknown  early  numerals 
which  had  puzzled  Dr.  Stevenson. 

* See  Journal  of  Bombay  Asiatic  Society,  VoL  V„  No.  18,  inscription  from  Karle, 
line  3. 

f Royal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  V.,  pp.  189,  264,  and  VI.,  239,  “On  the  ante- 
Brahmanical  worship  of  the  Hindus  of  the  Dakhan  ditto,  VII.,  1,  “ On  the  intermixture 
of  Buddhism  with  Brahmanism  in  the  religion  of  the  Hindus  of  the  Dakhan  j”  ditto, 
VII.,  64,  “ On  the  Buddha-Vaishnavas  of  the  Dakhan.’’ 

J Bombay  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  Vol.  V. 

§ Bombay  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  VI.,  published  in  1867,  “ On  the  Sanskrit  Poet 
Kalidasa  ditto,  VII.,  “ Ajanta  Inscriptions,”  and  “ Translations  of  the  Rudra  Dama  and 
Skanda  Gupta  Inscriptions  at  Junagarh.” 

||  Ditto,  IX.,  p.  139,  “ The  Inroads  of  the  Scythians  into  India.” 

H Ditto,  VIII.,  p.  225,  “ The  Ancient  Sanskrit  Numerals  in  the  Cave  Inscriptions,  and 
on  the  Sah  Coins.” 



But  Dr.  Bhau  Daji’s  judgment  has  not  kept  pace  with 
his  scholarship,  and  he  has  consequently  been  led  to  the 
publication  of  several  very  grave  errors.  He  thus  rashly 
announces  his  condemnation  of  Dr.  Mill’s  translation  of 
part  of  the  Bhitari  Inscription  : “ I may  now  warn  writers 

on  Indian  antiquities  against  implicitly  receiving  as  correct 
the  names  given  hv  Dr.  Mill  of  the  female  connexions  of  the 
Guptas,  namely,  Lichchhavi  and  Kumari  Devi.”*  I am 
happily  in  a position  to  settle  this  point  by  proving  the  abso- 
lute accuracy  of  Dr.  Mill’s  translation,  bv  referring  Dr. 
Bhau  Daji  to  the  gold  coins  of  Chandra  Gupta  bearing  two 
figures,  male  and  female,  on  the  obverse,  and  a female  seated 
on  a lion  on  the  reverse.  These  precious  coins  would  almost 
seem  to  have  been  designed  by  Chandra  Gupta’s  mint-master 
for  the  special  purpose  of  refuting  D . Bhau  Daji’s  assertion, 
by  labelling  the  two  figures  on  the  obverse  as  “ Chandra 
Gupta”  and  “ Kumari  Devi,”  and  by  adding  the  name  of 
Lichchhavayah  on  the  reverse.! 

In  another  place  he  has  seriously  proposed  the  altera- 
tion of  the  Chinese  chronology  of  the  pilgrim  Hwen  Thsang 
by  sixty  years  to  suit  the  date  of  Jayendra  of  Kashmir, 
simply  because  Hwen  Thsang  mentions  that,  on  his  arrival 
at  the  capital  of  Kashmir,  he  was  lodged  in  the  Jayendra 
Yihdra.  But  surely  one  may  sleep  in  a palace  of  Akbar 
without  becoming  a contemporary  of  that  great  Mogul.  If 
not,  then  Hwen  Thsang’s  date  is  hopelessly  dubious,  for  he  had 
already  lodged  in  the  Dushkara  Vihara  opposite  Varahamula, 
and  must,  therefore,  have  been  a contemporary  of  the  Indo- 
Scythian  prince  Dvshka  or  Duvishka , at  the  latter  end  of  the 
first  century  before  Christ. 

I pass  over  some  wild  identifications  proposed  in  Dr. 
Bhau  Daji’s  “Brief  Survey  of  Indian  Chronolgy,”  to  note  the 
curious  error  in  what  he  calls  a correct  genealogical  table  of 
the  Balabhi  Kings  supported  by  dates  from  copper  plates. 
In  this  genealogy  I notice  that  Dhruva  Sena,  who  is  dated  in 
310,  is  followed  by  six  generations,  all  of  which  are  made  to 
pass  away  by  346,  so  that  seven  generations,  including  Dhruva 

* Bombay  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  VII.,  p,  216. 

t I possess  two  of  these  coins  with  the  legends  quite  legible.  The  names  of  the  King 
and  Queen  are  written  perpendicularly.  The  reverse  legend  has  hitherto  been  erroneously 
read  as  Panch  Chhavayah. 



Sena,  or  six  without  him,  are  born,  marry,  and  die  in  36  years, 
which  allows  exactly  six  years  to  each  generation.* 

His  last  proposal  is  to  read  elm  Gilika  rajena  in  the 
Khalsi  version  of  the  famous  passage  in  Asoka’s  edicts, 
which  gives  the  names  of  the  four  Kings, — Ptolemy,  Antigo- 
nus,  Magas,  and  Alexander, — thus  making  Gilika  a Pali  form 
of  the  Latin  Grceci.  But  this  name  was  not  applied  to  the 
Hellenes  until  long  after  Asoka’s  time,  and  could  not  pro- 
perly have  been  applied  to  the  Macedonians  at  any  time. 
Hr.  Bhau  Daji  says — “ I take  this  opportunity  of  announcing 
that  the  word  Kilakila,  or  Kailakila , Yavanas , which 
puzzled  me  before,  is  only  a corruption,  or  rather  a mis- 
lection  of  Gilika  or  Greek. ”f  As  I furnished  Dr  Bhau 
Daji  with  his  copy  of  this  portion  of  the  Khalsi  inscription, 
I am  quite  familiar  with  the  words  which  he  has  thus 
strangely  perverted.  I read  them  as  chatuli,  4,  rajena , 
“ the  four,  4,  Kings,”  taking  the  character,  which  he  has 
made  a k,  to  be  the  numerical  symbol  for  4,  a mere  repetition 
of  the  written  word  chatuli.  The  same  repetition  is  found 
also  in  the  Ariano  Pali  version  of  Kapurdigiri,  where  the 
word  cliaturi  is  followed  by  four  upright  strokes  1 1 1 1,  like 
the  well  known  Roman  numeral,  which  cannot  possibly  mean 
anything  else  but  the  simple  number  4. 

But  in  spite  of  these  errors  due  to  hasty  opinions  and 
rash  speculations,  which  will  no  doubt  be  modified  hereafter 
by  more  mature  judgment,  I feel  that  Dr.  Bhau  Daji  is  a 
worthy  successor  of  Dr.  Stevenson,  and  that  he  has  well 
sustained  the  cause  of  Indian  archaeology  in  the  Bombay 

Of  my  own  share  in  the  progress  of  Indian  archaeology 
I may  be  permitted  to  give  a brief  statement  of  what  I have 
written,  and  of  the  discoveries  which  I have  been  able  to 
make  during  a long  and  active  career  in  India.  The  follow- 
ingis  a list  of  my  writings  on  my  Indian  antiquities  : 

1. — 1840 — Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  IX.,  p. 
867 — Description  of  some  new  Bactrian  coins. 

* Bombay  Journal,  VIII.,  p.  236,  “Brief  Survey  of  Indian  Chronology  — Genealogy 
of  Balabhi  Kings,  p.  245. 

t Bombay  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  IX.,  p.  CXXIV.  I note  that  both  Dr.  Bhau  D&ji 
and  Babu  Rajendra  Lai  use  the  barbarous  word  “ mislection.”  I believe  that  the  Kilakila 
Yavanas  are  not  mentioned  until  after  the  Andhras,  that  is,  not  until  several  centuries  after 
the  total  extinction  of  the  Greek  power  in  North-West  India  and  the  Panjab.  They  were 
probably  either  Iudo- Scythians,  or  Parthians. 



2.  — 1842 — Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  XI.,  p. 
130 — Second  notice  of  some  new  Bactrian  coins. 

3.  — 1843 — Boyal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal — Account 
of  tlie  discovery  of  the  ruins  of  the  Buddhist  city  of  Sankisa. 

4.  — 1843 — Numismatic  Chronicle — The  ancient  coinage 
of  Kashmir. 

5.  — 1843 — Numismatic  Chronicle — Attempt  to  explain 
some  of  the  monograms  on  the  Greek  coins  of  Ariana  and 

6.  — 1845 — Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  XIV., 
p.  480 — Notice  of  some  unpublished  coins  of  the  Indo- 

7.  — 1854 — The  Bhilsa  Topes,  or  Buddhist  Monuments 
of  Central  India,  8vo. 

8.  — 1854 — Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  XXIII. — 
Coins  of  Indian  Buddhist  Satraps  with  Greek  inscriptions. 

9.  — 1863 — Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  XXXII. — 
Translation  of  the  Bactro-Pali  inscription  from  Taxila. 

10.  — 1865 — Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal, XXX IV. — 
Coins  of  the  nine  Nagas,  and  of  two  other  dynasties  of 
Narwar  and  Gwalior. 

11.  — 1867 — Numismatic  Chronicle — Coin  of  the  Indian 
Prince  Sophy tes,  a contemporary  of  Alexander  the  Great. 

12.  — 1868-1869-1870 — Numismatic  Chronicle — “ Coins 
of  Alexander’s  successors  in  the  East,”  Part  I. ; the  Greeks 
of  Bactriana,  Ariana,  and  India. 

13.  — 1870 — The  ancient  Geography  of  India,  Yol.  I. ; 
the  Buddhist  period,  8vo. 

In  my  account  of  James  Prinsep’s  final  labour,  I have 
been  able  to  show  from  his  letters  that  the  anxiety  which  he 
publicly  expressed  to  obtain  more  specimens  of  the  latter 
coins,  “ which  mark  the  decadence  of  Greek  dominion  and 
Greek  skill,”  and  of  “ those  coins  on  which  the  Native  and 
Greek  legends  differ,  or  record  different  names,”  continued 
down  to  the  last,  when  in  October  1838  he  was  compelled 
by  ill  health  to  give  up  work  and  to  seek  for  change  of  air 
in  England.  This  subject  I was  able  to  follow  up  in  1840, 
when  the  acquisition  of  a large  number  of  coins  from 
Afghanistan  put  me  in  possession  of  new  specimens  of  Gondo- 
phares  and  Abdagases,  which  I published  in  the  Journal  of 



the  Asiatic  Society  for  that  year.  Several  collectors  then 
placed  their  cabinets  at  my  disposal ; and  with  the  purchase 
of  a second  collection  from  Kandahar  and  Sistan,  I was  able 
to  prepare  during  the  years  1840-41-42  no  less  than  fifteen 
lithographed  plates  of  all  the  known  coins  of  the  Greek  and 
Indo-Scythian  Kings  of  Bactriana,  Ariana,  and  India. 

While  this  work  was  in  progress,  I published,  in  1842, 
a second  notice  of  new  Bactrian  coins,  in  which  I first  made 
known  the  names  of  the  Greek  Kings  Straton,  Telephus, 
Hippostratus,  Nikias,  and  Dyonysius,  of  the  Greek  Queen 
Kalliope,  and  of  the  Scytho-Parthian  Kings  Arsakes  and 
Pakores.  In  these  two  papers  I gave  the  true  symbols  of  the 
Arian  letters  d,  g,  and  ph,  from  the  Native  legends  of  the 
coins  of  Gondophares,  Abdagases,  and  Telephus,  and  the  true 
symbol  for  the  compound  letter  st  from  the  coins  of  Straton 
and  Hippostratus.  These  discoveries  were  followed  up  by 
finding  the  title  of  Strategasa,  for  the  Greek  Strategos 
or  General,  on  the  coins  of  the  Aspa  Yarmma,  which  bear 
the  name  of  the  great  King  Azas  on  the  obverse,  and  that 
of  his  Hindu  General  on  the  reverse.  “ These,”  as  Prinsep 
truly  said,  “ are  the  most  precious  to  the  student  of  Indian 
history,”  for  they  prove  that  the  military  discipline  of  the 
Greeks  was  still  in  use  nearly  half  a century  after  their  domi- 
nion had  passed  away. 

At  the  same  time  I found  that  the  reverse  legends  of 
the  coins  of  Queen  Agathokhia,  which  had  puzzled  Prinsep 
and  Lassen,  contained  only  the  titles  and  name  of  Straton, 
who  must,  therefore,  have  been  her  husband.  Continuing 
my  discoveries,  I obtained  the  true  value  of  the  Arian  bh 
from  the  words  blirata-putrasa,  or  “ brother’s  son,”  which, 
on  the  coins  of  Abdagases  are  the  equivalent  of  the  Greek 
Adelpliideds.  Pollowing  up  this  clue  I next  discovered  the 
symbol  for  gh  on  the  coins  of  the  Native  King  Amogha- 

About  the  same  time  I assigned  one  of  Prinsep’ s series 
of  imitations  of  the  Indo-Scythian  money  to  its  proper  country 
Kashmir,  by  identifying  the  coins  of  no  less  than  eighteen 
of  the  Hindu  Bajas,  from  Toramana  to  Jaga  Deva,  who 
ruled  from  about  A.  D.  500  to  1200.  This  discovery  was  pub- 
lished in  the  Numismatic  Chronicle  for  1843.  A few  years 
later,  in  1847,  I was  able  to  assign  another  series  of  some 



extent,  but  of  later  date  and  of  less  interest,  to  the  Hindu 
Bajas  of  Kangra. 

In  1845,  in  a notice  of  some  new  coins  of  the  Indo- 
Scytliians,  I first  published  the  reading  of  the  name  of  the 
great  Kushan  tribe  of  Indo-Scythians  on  the  coins  of  Kujula, 
and  in  the  Manikyala  inscription  of  General  Court.  At  the 
same  time  I added  a genuine  Buddhist  type  to  the  known 
coins  of  Kanishka. 

In  January  and  February  1851,  Lieutenant  Maisey  and 
myself  explored  a large  number  of  Buddhist  stupas,  or 
topes,  in  the  Bhilsa  District.  In  the  same  year  I submitted 
a short  account  of  our  discoveries  to  H.  H.  Wilson,  which  he 
published  in  the  Journal  of  the  Boyal  Asiatic  Society.  At 
the  same  time  I prepared  a detailed  account  of  all  the  stupas 
that  we  explored,  with  translations  of  several  hundred  short 
inscriptions.  This  work,  which  was  completed  in  1851,  was 
not  published  until  1854,  under  the  title  of  “ The  Bhilsa 
Topes.”  Twenty  years  have  since  passed,  many  of  them 
years  of  rare  experience  in  archaeological  investigation,  and 
I see  no  reason  to  alter  the  dates  which  I then  proposed  of 
the  third  century  B.  C.,  for  the  erection  of  all  the  principal 
topes,  and  of  the  first  century  A.  D.  for  the  sculptured 
gateways  of  the  great  stupa. 

These  dates  have  been  generally  accepted ; in  fact,  I am 
not  aware  that  they  have  been  disputed  by  any  one  save 
H.  H.  Wilson.*  His  arguments  I will  now  examine  at 
length,  as  it  seems  to  me  to  be  very  important  that  there 
should  be  no  doubt  as  to  the  age  of  these  remarkable  monu- 
ments, whose  sculptures  are  so  valuable  for  the  illustration 
of  Indian  art.  In  justice  also  to  myself  I think  it  is 
absolutely  necessary  that  I should  take  notice  of  the  objec- 
tions which  have  been  publicly  brought  forward  in  a lecture 
on  Buddha  and  Buddhism,  by  so  eminent  an  oriental  scholar 
as  Horace  Hayman  Wilson. 

He  begins  by  stating  that  I make  the  age  of  the  great 
Bhilsa  tope  as  old  as  Asoka,  “ its  being  as  old  as  Asoka, 
depending  upon  the  identification  of  Gotiputra,  the  teacher 
of  Mogaliputra,  who  presided,  it  is  said,  at  the  third  council 

* Royal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  Vol.  XVI.,  “ On  Buddha  and  Buddhism,”  by  H.  H. 
Wilson,  pp.  250-251. 



in  B.  C.  241,  a statement  altogether  erroneous,  as  Mogali- 
putra,  Maudgala,  or  Maudgalayana,  was  one  of  Sakya’s  first 
disciples  three  centuries  earlier.”  In  this  passage  it  is 
Wilson’s  own  statement  that  is  “ altogether  erroneous,”  and 
not  mine;  and  I now  repeat  my  former  assertion  that 
Mogaliputra  did  preside  at  the  Buddhist  synod  held  in  the 
reign  of  Asoka.  The  mistake  which  Wilson  has  here  made 
is  a strange  one  for  an  oriental  scholar,  as  he  not  only 
ignores  the  detailed  history  of  this  council  given  in  the 
Mahawanso,*  but  stranger  still  he  confounds  Mogalana  or 
Maudgalyayana,  the  disciple  of  Buddha,  with  one  of  his 
descendants,  for  Mogaliputra  bears  the  same  relation  to 
Mogali  that  Will’s-son,  or  Wilson,  does  to  Will. 

A little  further  on  he  falls  into  another  error,  equally 
great,  and  almost  as  strange  as  that  just  noticed.  He  objects 
to  the  date  of  the  Bhilsa  topes,  which  I had  inferred  from  the 
inscriptions  on  the  relic  caskets,  because  “ no  legitimate  con- 
clusions can  be  drawn  from  inscriptions  of  this  class  as  to 
the  date  of  the  Sanchi  monuments,”  as  the  presence  of  relics 
in  any  monument  is  no  more  a proof  of  its  antiquity,  than 
would  the  hairs  of  Buddha,  if  ever  dug  up,  prove  the  Shwe- 
Dagon  of  Rangoon  to  have  been  built  in  his  day.”  Here 
the  professor  has  entirely  lost  sight  of  the  one  great  fact  on 
which  I relied,  that  the  inscriptions  on  the  caskets  are 
engraved  in  characters  of  Asolca’s  age.  On  this  fact  alone 
I argued  that  the  stupas  which  contained  these  relic  caskets 
must  be  as  old  as  the  reign  of  Asoka.  Having  ignored  this 
fact  altogether  and  tilted  against  an  argument  which  I never 
used,  he  then  proceeds  to  say  that  the  topes  of  Ceylon 
“ appear  to  be  of  an  earlier  date,  if  we  may  credit  the  tradi- 
tion which  ascribes  the  erection  of  the  Kuanvelli  mound  at 
Anurlklhapura  to  King  Dutthagamini,  who  reigned  161  B.  C. 
to  137  B,  C.”  So  that,  in  the  opinion  of  one  of  the  most 
eminent  Sanskrit  scholars,  a tradition  is  of  more  historical 
value  than  a self-evident  fact,  the  truth  of  which  has  been 
admitted  by  every  one  except  Wilson  himself. 

Having  thus  settled  to  his  own  satisfaction  that  the 
topes  of  Ceylon,  which  could  not  have  been  built  before  the 

* It  seems  almost  superfluous  to  refer  to  the  Mahawanso  for  a fact  which  is  so  well 
known  ; but  as  Wilson  has  publicly  asserted  that  Mogaliputra  was  a disciple  of  Buddha 
himself,  and  has  branded  my  statement  as  “altogether  erroneous,”  I refer  the  reader  to  the 
3rd  Chapter  of  Tumour’s  Mahawanso  for  the  proceedings  of  the  First  Buddhist  Synod 
under  Mahakassapo  ; to  the  4th  Chapter  for  the  Second  Synod  ; and  to  the  5th  Chapter  for 
the  Third  Synod,  held  during  the  reign  of  Asoka,  under  the  guidance  of  Mogaliputra. 



conversion  of  the  Ceylonese  to  Buddhism  by  Mahindo,  the 
son  of  Asoka,  are  older  than  the  great  Sanchi  stupa,  which, 
as  I have  pointed  out  in  my  Bhilsa  topes,  almost  certainly 
gave  its  name  to  the  hill  of  Clietiyagiri  which  was  known 
by  that  name  before  the  birth  of  Mahindo,  Wilson  con- 
tinues his  remarks  as  follows  : “ A somewhat  earlier  period 
than  that  of  the  Indian  stupas  may  he  assigned  to  another 
important  class  of  Buddhist  monuments,  the  cave  temples 
belonging  to  that  persuasion,  but  they  also,  as  far  as  has 
been  yet  ascertained,  are  subsequent  to  Christianity.”  Thus, 
according  to  Wilson,  the  cave  temples  of  Western  India,  in 
which  not  a single  inscription  of  Asoka’s  period  has  yet 
been  found,  are  older  than  the  Sanchi  stupa,  the  railings  of 
which  are  literally  covered  with  inscriptions  of  Asoka’s  age. 

But  although  the  points  to  which  Wilson  so  strangely 
took  exception  are  not  inaccurate,  there  are  in  my  Bhilsa 
topes  several  undoubted  errors,  of  which,  perhaps,  the  worst 
is  my  making  the  five  Kings  of  Magadha,  whose  names  are 
mentioned  by  Hwen  Thsang,  form  a continuation  of  the 
great  Gupta  dynasty.  Their  true  period  would  appear  to 
have  been  seven  hundred  years  prior  to  Hwen  Thsang’s  visit, 
or  about  66  B.  C.  Accordingly  I look  upon  these  five  Kings 
as  the  immediate  successors  of  the  Sunga  dynasty  in 
Magadha,  and  the  predecessors  of  the  Guptas,  while  the 
Kanwa  Kings  of  the  Puranas  were  their  contemporaries  in 
North-Western  India.  Pollowing  out  this  view,  I now  place 
the  building  of  the  great  temple  at  Bodh-Gaya  in  the  first 
century  B.  C. 

In  the  same  year,  1854,  I published  a notice  of  the 
t{  Coins  of  Indian  Buddhist  Satraps  with  Greek  inscriptions,” 
in  which  I made  known  the  symbols  for  the  Arian  letters  ch 
and  chh  and  rm*  and  applied  the  discovery  of  the  former  to 
prove  the  Buddhist  faith  of  the  Scythian  King  Kozola  Kada- 
phes,  who  calls  himself  on  his  coins  Sachha  dharma  thidasa , 
the  “ supporter  of  the  true  dharma.”f  Here,  again,  I was 
met  by  the  adverse  and  erroneous  criticism  of  WTilson,J  who 

* Ch  is  found  in  aprati-chaJcra,  “ invincible  with  the  discus,”  chh  in  chkatrapa  or  Satrap, 
and  rm  in  the  two  Hindu  names,  Aspavarmma  and  Indra  Varmma. 

+ I have  adopted  the  reading  of  thidasa  from  Professor  Dowson,  in  lieu  of  pidasa, 
which  was  my  original  rendering. 

J London  Athenceum,  15th  March  1856. 



objected  that  “ the  legends  of  these  coins  had  not  been  satis- 
factorily read  ; and  he  especially  objected  to  the  reading  of 
the  word  Ksliatrapasa  or  Satrap,  the  letters  of  which  were 
very  doubtful,  and  no  other  evidence  being  found  to  prove 
that  this  title  had  ever  been  borne  by  a Hindu  prince.” 
The  statement  that  no  other  evidence  had  been  found  is 
strangely  incorrect,  as  Prinsep  had  found  the  title  in  the 
Girnar  bridge  inscription  of  Rudra  Dama,  a Hindu  prince, 
and  Wilson’s  own  translation  of  this  inscription,  afterwards 
furnished  to  Mr.  Thomas,*  contains  the  title  of  Mahakslia- 
trapa  applied  to  Rudra  Hama.  The  Satraps  whose  coins  I 
brought  to  notice  in  this  paper  were  Zeionises  or  Jihoniya, 
and  Raziobalos  or  Rajubul ; and  I may  add  of  the  legends 
of  their  coins,  which  Wilson  declared  “ had  not  been  satis- 
factorily read,”  that  every  single  letter  was  rightly  assigned. 

In  the  same  paper  I first  made  known  the  names  of  the 
Scytho-Parthian  Kings  Orthagnes  and  Sasi,  or  Sasan,  both  of 
whom  claim  on  their  coins  to  be  connexions  of  the  great 
King  Gondophares.  I also  added  my  mite  towards  the 
identification  of  Chandra  Gupta  Maurya  with  Sandra- 
koptos  by  bringing  to  notice  a fragment  of  Euphorion, 
the  librarian  of  Antiochus  the  Great,  which  makes  “ the 
Indian  Morias  live  in  wooden  houses,”  and  the  statement  of 
Hesychins  that  “ the  Morias  were  Indian  Kings.” 

In  November  1861  I began  my  explorations  as  Archaeo- 
logical Surveyor  to  the  Government  of  India,  and  the  results 
of  my  four  years’  work  form  the  subject  of  the  present 
volumes,  in  which  are  recorded  the  discovery  of  many 
ancient  cities,  of  which  the  most  famous  are  Taxila  and 
Sangala  in  the  Panjab,  Sruglma,  Ahichhatra,  Kosambi,  and 
Sravasti  in  the  north-west,  and  Nalanda  in  the  east. 

In  1862  I discovered  the  names  of  the  Macedonian 
months,  Artemisios  and  Apellaios , in  two  of  the  Ariauo  Pali 
inscriptions  from  Afghanistan.  This  discovery  was  also 
made  independently  by  Professor  Howson ; and,  although 
objected  to  by  Babu  Rajendra  Lai,  it  has  since  been  fully 
confirmed  by  the  further  discovery  of  the  names  of  Panemos 
and  Daisios  in  other  inscriptions.  The  name  of  Panemos 
occurs  in  the  well  known  Taxila  inscription  of  the  Satrap 

# Prinsep’s  Essays  on  Indian  Antiquities,  II.,  68. 




Liako  Kujulako , dated  in  the  78th  year  of  the  great  King 
Jloga,  whom  I identified  with  the  Mocts  of  the  coins,  a 
conclusion  which  is  now  generally  accepted.  I also  pub- 
lished a partial  translation  of  this  inscription,  in  which  I 
made  known  the  values  of  the  Arian  compounds  of  the  letter 
r in  the  words  purvva , sarvva,  and  acharya,  which  were  at  the 
same  time  independently  made  out  in  England  by  Professor 

In  a note  on  the  same  inscription,  published  shortly 
afterwards  in  the  Journal  of  the  Asiatic  Society  of  Bengal, 
I gave  the  true  values  of  the  old  Indian  cyphers  for  40,  50, 
60,  and  70,  of  which  three  bad  not  previously  been  ascer- 
tained by  Dr.  Bhau  Daji  in  his  paper  published  in  the  same 

In  1865  appeared  my  essay  on  the  “ Coins  of  the  Nine 
Nagas,  and  of  two  other  dynasties  of  Narwar  and  Gwalior.” 
The  coins  of  the  Naga  Kings  are  of  considerable  importance 
as  they  are  certainly  as  old  as  those  of  the  Gupta  dynasty, 
and  comprise  as  many  names.  The  coins  of  Pasupati  are 
valuable,  as  their  date  is  almost  certain  ; Pasupati  being  tbe 
son  of  Toramana,  who  ruled  over  the  countries  between  the 
Jumna  and  the  Narbada  towards  the  end  of  the  third  cen- 
tury A.  D.  The  latest  series  of  coins  are  also  interesting 
as  they  are  dated  and  include  one  Hindu  Prince  Chahara 
Deva,  who  for  a long  time  was  the  successful  opponent 
of  tbe  early  Muhammadan  Kings  of  Delhi.  In  the  same 
paper  I successfully  identified  Narwar  with  the  city  of 
Padmavati  of  the  poet  Bhavabhuti,  by  the  names  of  no  less 
than  four  streams  in  its  immediate  vicinity  which  are  men- 
tioned in  the  drama  of  Malati  and  Madhava. 

During  my  stay  in  England  from  1866  to  1870,  I pub- 
lished first  an  account  of  the  “ Coin  of  a Indian  Prince 
Sophytes,  a contemporary  of  Alexander,”  preparatory  to  a 
long-contemplated  work  on  the  “ Coins  of  Alexander’s  suc- 
cessors in  the  East,”  of  which  the  first  part,  relating  to  the 
Greeks  of  Bactrina,  Ariana,  and  India,  is  now  nearly  complete, 
nine  out  of  ten  portions  having  already  appeared  in  the 
Numismatic  Chronicle.  In  this  work  I have  added  coins  of 
the  new  Kings  Artemidorus,  Epander,  Theophilus,  Apollo- 
plianes,  and  Straton  II.  Altogether  there  are  described  tbe 
coins  of  no  less  than  thirty  Kings  with  pure  Greek  names,  of 



whom  only  seven  are  mentioned  in  history.  As  the  coins  of 
several  of  these  princes  are  found  in  considerable  numbers  in 
the  Panjab  and  North-Western  India,  there  can  be  little 
doubt  that  their  conquests  extended  far  into  India,  as  stated 
by  several  Greek  writers,  and  as  admitted  in  a few  passages 
of  Sanskrit  writers,  which  have  only  lately  been  made  ac- 
cessible. The  history  of  the  Eastern  Greeks  is,  therefore, 
intimately  connected  with  that  of  India  for  more  than  a 
century  after  the  time  of  Asoka,  when  their  dominions  passed 
to  the  Indo-Scythians,  whose  occupation  of  Northern  India, 
though  equally  certain,  is  barely  acknowledged  by  Hindu 

Of  my  last  work,  “ The  Ancient  Geography  of  India,” 
which  appeared  at  the  close  of  1870,  I will  say  no  more 
than  that  it  is  chiefly  devoted  to  the  illustration  of  the  cam- 
paigns of  Alexander  and  of  the  pilgrimage  of  Hwen 

In  closing  this  review  of  the  progress  of  Indian 
archaeology,  in  which  the  chief  share  has  been  achieved  by 
men  who  were  not  professed  scholars,  I beg  it  to  be  dis- 
tinctly understood  that  we  field  archaeologists  make  no 
claim  to  more  than  ordinary  scholarship,  and  that  if  we 
have  been  successful  in  many  of  our  archaeological  re- 
searches, we  can  truly  ascribe  our  success  in  great  measure 
to  the  hitherto  difficult  path  having  been  smoothed  by  the 
labours  of  our  great  Sanskrit  scholars,  whose  translations 
have  placed  within  our  reach  nearly  all  the  chief  works  of 
Indian  learning.  If  we  have  sometimes  been  able  to  per- 
ceive what  had  escaped  the  notice  of  our  more  learned 
contemporaries,  it  has  been  owing  to  the  lift  that  we  have 
got  from  them ; for,  as  the  old  scholiast  says,  Pygmcei 
gigantum  humeros,  8fc .,  “ even  pygmies  on  the  shoulders  of 
giants  can  see  farther  than  the  giants  themselves.” 



PUtU  l. 



Uhripapa  ■ 








FA-HIANano  hwen-thsang 



"52  Mile*  to  1 [bet. 

A,  CunninghsiTi  A<t\ 

Litao.  at  the  Surveyor  General'*  Office.  Calcutta,  June  18?'. 


Eepcrt  of  operations  of  the  Archaeological  Surveyor  to  the  Government  of 
India,  during  Season  1861-62- 

In  the  explorations  which  I have  carried  out  during  the 
past  season,  I have  adhered  strictly  to  the  plan  of  proceedings 
sketched  in  the  memorandum  which  I submitted  to  the 
Governor  General  in  November  1861.  I began  work  in 
December  at  Gaya;  and  after  exploring  all  the  places  of 
antiquarian  interest  in  Bihar,  Tirliut,  and  Champaran,  I 
visited  several  ancient  sites  in  Gorakhpur,  Azimgarh,  and 
Jonpur,  on  my  way  to  Banaras,  where,  on  the  3rd  April, 
I closed  work  for  the  season.  I will  now  give  a brief  sketch 
of  my  operations  at  the  different  places  in  the  order  in  which 
I visited  them : 

I.  GAYA. 

There  are  two  places  of  the  name  of  Gaya,  one  of 
which  is  called  Buddha- Gay  a,  or  Buddhistical  Gaya,  to 
distinguish  it  from  the  city  of  Gaya,  which  is  situated  six 
miles  to  the  northward.*  In  Gaya  itself  there  are  no  ancient 
buildings  now  existing ; hut  most  of  the  present  temples  have 
been  erected  on  former  sites  and  with  old  materials.  Statues, 
both  Buddhistical  and  Brahmanical,  are  found  in  all  parts 
of  the  old  city,  and  more  especially  about  the  temples,  where 
they  are  fixed  in  the  walls,  or  in  small  recesses  forming 
separate  shrines  in  the  court-yards  of  the  larger  temples. 
I have  noted  the  names  and  localities  of  all  these  statues. 

The  inscriptions  at  Gaya  are  numerous ; but,  owing  to 
the  destruction  of  the  ancient  temples,  there  are  hut  few 
of  them  in  situ,  or  attached  to  the  objects  which  they  were 
originally  designed  to  commemorate.  I have  taken  copies 
of  all  the  inscriptions,  of  which  the  most  interesting  is  a 
long  and  perfect  one,  dated  in  the  era  of  the  Nirvdn,  or 
death  of  Buddha.  I read  the  date  as  follows  : 

Bhayavati  parinirvritte  samvat  1819  Karttike  badi  1 Budhe, 

that  is,  “in  the  year  1819  of  the  emancipation  of  Bhagavata, 
on  Wednesday,  the  first  day  of  the  waning  moon  of  Kartik.” 


* See  Plate  III. 



If  the  era  liere  used  is  the  same  as  that  of  the  Buddhists  of 
Ceylon  and  Burmah,  which  began  in  543  B.  C.,  the  date  of 
this  inscription  will  be  1819 — 543=A.  D.  1276.  The  style  of 
the  letters  is  in  keeping  with  this  date,  hut  is  quite  incom- 
patible with  that  derivable  from  the  Chinese  date  of  the 
era.  The  Chinese  place  the  death  of  Buddha  upwards  of 
1,000  years  before  Christ,  so  that,  according  to  them,  the  date 
of  this  inscription  would  be  about  A.  D.  800,  a period  much 
too  early  for  the  style  of  character  used  in  the  inscription. 
But  as  the  day  of  the  week  is  here  fortunately  added,  the  date 
can  be  verified  by  calculation.  According  to  my  calculation 
the  date  of  the  inscription  corresponds  with  Wednesday,  the 
17th  September,  A.D.  1342.  This  would  place  the  Nirvana 
of  Buddha  in  477  B.  C.,  which  is  the  very  year  that  was  first 
proposed  by  myself  as  the  most  probable  date  of  that  event. 
This  corrected  date  has  since  been  adopted  by  Professor  Max 

Some  of  the  inscriptions,  though  less  interesting,  are 
still  valuable  for  the  light  which  they  will  throw  upon  the 
mediaeval  period  of  Indian  history.  Several  Rajas  are  men- 
tioned in  them  ; and  in  one  of  them  the  date  is  very  minutely 
detailed  in  several  different  eras. 

The  most  noteworthy  places  at  Gaya  are  the  temples  of 
Vishnu-pad,  or  54  Vishnu’s  feet;”  of  Gadddhar,  or  the  “mace- 
bearer,”  a title  of  Vishnu,  and  of  Gai/esioari  Devi.  The 
figure  in  this  last  temple  is,  however,  that  of  DurggH  slaying 
the  Buffalo,  or  Maheshasur;  but  as  the  destruction  of  the 
Asur  Gaya  is  universally  attributed  to  Vishnu,  this  temple 
must  originally  have  contained  a statue  of  that  god  as 
Gayeswara  Deva,  or  the  “lord  of  Gaya.”  Gaya  was  an  Asur 
or  demon.  All  the  gods  and  goddesses  sat  upon  him,  but 
were  unable  to  keep  him  doun,  when  Vishnu  put  his  foot 
upon  him  and  prevailed  ; and  the  giant  is  said  to  be  still 
lying  there  under  the  temple  of  Vislmii-pad.  This,  however, 
is  the  Bralimanical  story,  for  the  Buddhists  say  that  the 
name  is  derived  from  Gaya  Ivasyapa,  a fire-worshipper,  who 
on  this  very  spot  was  overcome  by  Buddha  in  argument. 

* I have  since  submitted  this  date  to  the  scrutiny  of  my  learned  friend  Bapu 
Deva  Sastri,  the  well  known  astronomer ; according  to  whose  calculation  the  1st  of 
Kartilebadi  in  A.  D.  1276  was  a Friday,  and  in  A.  D.  1342  a Monday;  but  in  A.  D. 
1341  it  fell  on  Wednesday  the  7th  of  October  N.  S.,  which  would  place  the  beginning 
of  the  Buddhist  era  in  B.  C.  478. 


























tf  f 




naif  //. 

ShowmgH  WEH-THSAN63 

32  Males  to  1 Incli 

Uch  eh)i  ag-HitSa 

i Adichlini  i 




Several  interesting  sculptures,  and  one  long  and  well  pre- 
served inscription,  are  also  to  be  seen  at  tlie  Krishna 
Dwarika  temple. 

In  the  neighbourhood  of  the  Vishnu-pad  there  is  a deep 
tank  called  Suraj  Ktind,  to  the  west  of  which  is  a temple  to 
. Snrya  or  the  Sun.  The  vestibule  of  this  temple  is  formed  of 
two  double  rows  of  pillars,  all  ten  feet  in  height,  and  all 
leaning  more  or  less  to  the  north.  There  are  five  pillars  in 
each  row.  The  whole  temple,  both  inside  and  outside,  has 
been  repeatedly  white-washed,  so  as  almost  to  conceal  the 
ornaments  of  the  pillars.  One  long  inscription  Avas  found 
inside,  and  a second  was  afterwards  obtained  by  scraping 
off  the  thick  coating  of  white-wash  from  a part  of  the 
wall  pointed  out  by  a good-natured  Brahman.  This  inscrip- 
tion was  the  valuable  one  first  mentioned  as  containing  a 
date  in  the  era  of  the  death  of  Buddha. 

The  several  hills  in  the  immediate  neighbourhood  are 
also  esteemed  holy,  and  are  accordingly  crowned  with  temples. 
The  highest  of  these,  to  the  south  of  the  town,  is  called 
Brahmjuin,  or  Brahma-yoni , the  temple  on  its  summit  being 
dedicated  to  the  Sakti,  or  female  energy  of  Brahma,  whose 
five -headed  statue  is  enshrined  in  the  temple.*  This  figure 
is  placed  on  an  old  pedestal  which  is  said  to  have  been 
inscribed  with  a verse  stating  the  date  of  erection  in  V.  S. 
1690  or  A.  D.  1633.  The  destruction  of  the  statue  is  attri- 
buted with  much  probability  to  Aurang  Shah.  On  the  left 
hand  of  this  statue  there  is  a small  two-anned  standing  figure 
with  a horse  on  the  pedestal.  It  is,  therefore,  most  probably 
a statue  of  Sambhunath,  the  3rd  of  the  21  Jain  hierarchs, 
whose  cognizance  is  a horse.  Beside  this  figure  there  is  a 
group  of  Siva  and  Parvati  with  the  Bull  Nandi  below,  and 
a short  imperfect  inscription  in  three  lines,  of  which  only 
one-half  now  remains.  The  characters  belong  to  the  period 
of  the  10th  or  11th  century.  The  hill  is  150  feet  in  height, 
and  very  steep  on  the  town  side.  But  the  ascent  has  been 
rendered  easy  to  pilgrims  by  the  erection  of  a long  flight  of 
steps  from  the  base  to  the  summit  by  the  Mahratta  Deva 
Kao  Bhao  Saheb,  since  the  accession  of  the  present  Maharaja 
Jayaji,  of  Gwalior,  that  is,  within  the  last  18  years,  as  re- 
corded on  an  inscription  slab  let  into  the  pavement. 

* See  Plate  III.  for  the  position  of  this  hill.  This  statue  belongs  properly  to  Siva  who 
has  live  heads,  as  Brahma  has  only  four  heads. 



To  the  north  of  the  town,  the  granite  hill  of  Ramsila 
rises  to  a height  of  372  feet.  The  granite  temple  on  its  sum- 
mit contains  a lingam  called  Fdtdleswara  Maliadeva,  as  well 
as  small  figures  of  Siva  and  Parbati.  The  upper  portion  of 
this  temple  is  modern,  being  constructed  of  various  ancient 
fragments  that  do  not  fit  well  together,  and  which  are  in 
some  instances  placed  upside  down.  The  lower  part  of  the 
temple,  from  eight  to  ten  feet  in  height,  is  undoubtedly  old ; 
and  perhaps  the  date  of  1071  Samvat,  or  A.  D.  1014,  found 
on  one  of  the  blocks  of  the  granite  pavement  may  record  the 
actual  period  of  the  erection  of  the  temple.  The  basement 
mouldings  are  strikingly  hold  and  effective. 

To  the  north-west  of  the  town,  the  hill  of  Fretsila  bears 
a small  temple  erected  by  Ahalya  Bai  to  pacify  the  ghost  or 
spirit  (pretaj  who  is  said  to  dwell  in  the  hill.  I could  learn 
nothing  of  the  origin  of  this  spirit,  who  is  held  in  great  awe, 
from  which  I infer  that  he  is  identical  with  Yama,  the  god  of 
death,  one  of  whose  titles  is  Fretcirajci , or  king  of  ghosts,  that 
is,  of  departed  spirits.  The  hill  is  541  feet  in  height,  and  its 
rocks  are  believed  to  contain  gold.  The  shrine  is  much  fre- 
quented by  pilgrims  who  seek  to  appease  the  dread  spirit  by 
their  offerings.  There  is  a curious  serpentine  road  leading  from 
the  foot  of  Bamsila  to  Pretsila.  The  road  has  been  metalled, 
and  trees  have  been  planted  on  both  sides  of  it  by  some 
wealthy  devotees. 

FLdma  Gaya  is  a small  hill  on  the  eastern  hank  of  the 
Phalgu  Elver,  opposite  Brahmjuin.  There  are  some  ruins 
and  broken  statues  scattered  about  it,  hut  nothing  of  any 
interest  except  one  short  inscription  of  Sri  Mahendra  Fdla 
Feva,  dated  in  the  eighth  year  of  his  own  reign,  or  of  some 
new  era. 


Buddlia-Gaya  is  famous  as  the  locality  of  the  holy  Pipal 
tree  under  which  Sakya  Sinha  sat  for  six  years  in  mental 
abstraction,  until  he  obtained  Buddhahood.  The  name  is 
usually  written  Buddha-Gaya ; hut  as  it  is  commonly  pro- 
nounced Bodh-Gaya,  I have  little  doubt  that  it  was  originally 
called  Bodlii-Gaya,  after  the  celebrated  Bodhi-drum  or 
“ tree  of  knowledge.”  A long  and  detailed  account  of  this 
sacred  place  is  given  by  the  Chinese  pilgrim  Ilwen  Thsang, 
who  travelled  all  over  India  between  the  years  A.  D.  629  and 


642.  He  describes  minutely  all  the  temples  and  statues 
which  surrounded  the  celebrated  Pipal  tree,  known  through- 
out the  Buddhist  world  as  the  JBodhi-drum.  Several  of  the 
objects  enumerated  by  the  Chinese  pilgrim  I have  been  able 
to  identify  from  their  exact  correspondence  with  his  descrip- 

The  celebrated  Bodhi  tree  still  exists,  but  is  very  much 
decayed ; one  large  stem,  with  three  branches  to  the  westward, 
is  still  green,  but  the  other  branches  are  barkless  and  rotten. 
The  green  branch  perhaps  belongs  to  some  younger  tree,  as 
there  are  numerous  stems  of  apparently  different  trees  clus- 
tered together.  The  tree  must  have  been  renewed  frequently, 
as  the  present  Pipal  is  standing  on  a terrace  at  least  30  feet 
above  the  level  of  the  surrounding  country.  It  was  in  full 
vigour  in  1811,  when  seen  by  Dr.  Buchanan  (Hamilton), 
who  describes  it  as  in  all  probability  not  exceeding  100  years 
of  age.  Hwen  Thsang  also  describes  an  early  renewal  by 
King  Puma  Varmma  after  its  destruction  by  King  Sasdngka, 
who  dug  up  the  ground  on  which  it  had  stood,  and  moistened 
the  earth  with  sugar-cane  juice  to  prevent  its  renewal. 

Immediately  to  the  east  of  the  Pipal -tree  there  is  a mas- 
sive brick  temple,  nearly  50  feet  square  at  base  and  160  feet 
in  height  from  the  granite  floor  of  the  lower  story  to  the 
top  of  its  broken  pinnacle.  This  is  beyond  all  doubt  the 
Vihdr,  from  160  to  170  feet  in  height,  described  by  Hwen 
Thsang  as  standing  to  the  east  of  the  Bodhi  tree.  Its  base 
was  about  20  paces  square.  It  was  built  of  bluish  bricks 
plastered  with  lime ; it  was  ornamented  with  niches  in  stages, 
each  niche  holding  a golden  statue  of  Buddha,  and  was 
crowned  with  an  amalaka  fruit  in  gilt  copper.  The  existing 
temple,  both  in  size  and  appearance,  corresponds  so  exactly 
with  this  description,  that  I feel  quite  satisfied  it  must  he 
the  identical  temple  that  was  seen  by  Hwen  Thsang.  The 
ruined  temple,  as  it  now  stands,  is  160  feet  in  height,  with  a 
base  of  rather  less  than  50  feet  square.  It  is  built  entirely  of 
dark  red  brick  of  a bluish  tinge,  and  has  formerly  been  plas- 
tered all  over.  Lastly,  the  walls  are  ornamented  externally 

* The  life  and  travels  of  Hwen  Thsang  have  been  given  to  the  world  by  M.  Stanislas 
Julien  in  three  volumes  entitled  Voyages  des  Pelerins  Bouddhistes.  This  translation,  the 
work  of  twenty  years’  persevering  labor  in  the  acquisition  of  Chinese  and  Sanskrit,  combined 
with  an  intimate  knowledge  of  Buddhist  literature,  is  a lasting  monument  of  human  in- 
dustry and  learning. 



with  eight  tiers,  or  rows,  of  niches,  many  of  which  still  hold 
figures  of  Buddha.  These  figures  are  made  of  plastered 
brick,  but  they  were  no  doubt  formerly  gilt,  as  is  done  with 
the  plaster  statues  of  the  Burmese  at  the  present  day. 
There  is,  however,  no  trace  of  the  copper-gilt  amalcika 
fruit.  I have  thus  been  particular  in  noting  the  points  of 
correspondence  between  the  two  temples,  because  there 
seems  to  me  to  he  a very  strong  probability  that  the  exist- 
ing temple  was  originally  built  by  the  celebrated  Amara 
Sinha,  the  author  of  the  Amara  Kosha,  as  I will  now  pro- 
ceed to  show. 

On  the  site  of  this  temple,  according  to  Hwen  Thsang, 
there  was  originally  a small  Vilidr  built  by  Asoka  between 
259  and  241  B.  C.*  Afterwards,  a new  temple  of  very  great 
size  was  built  by  a Brahman  in  compliance  with  the  instruc- 
tions of  the  god  Mahadeva  conveyed  to  him  in  a vision. 
Inside  the  temple  was  placed  a statue  of  the  ascetic  Buddha 
as  he  appeared  when  seated  in  meditation  under  the  Bodhi 
tree.  The  statue  was  11  feet  and  5 inches  in  height,  8 feet 
8 inches  in  breadth  across  the  knees,  and  6 feet  2 inches 
across  the  shoulders.  The  figure  was  sitting  cross-legged 
facing  the  east.  Now  these  particulars  correspond  almost 
exactly  with  the  arrangements  of  the  present  building.  Its 
doorway  is  towards  the  east,  and  consequently  the  enshrined 
statue  must  have  faced  toward  the  east.  The  statue  itself  has 
long  ago  disappeared,  but  its  pedestal  still  remains  in  good 
order.  Its  dimensions  are  as  follows  : length  13  feet  2 inches, 
breadth  5 feet  8 inches,  and  height  4 feet  ^ inch,  which 
measurements  agree  most  closely  with  those  recorded  by 
Hwen  Thsang;  namely  12  feet  5 inches  in  length  by  4 feet 
2 inches  in  height.  Considering  how  exactly  both  the  temple 
and  the  pedestal  of  the  figure  correspond  in  size  and  in  other 
respects  with  the  description  of  Hwen  Thsang,  I think  there 
can  be  no  reasonable  doubt  that  the  present  temple  is  the 
same  that  was  seen  by  him  in  the  7th  century  of  our  era.f 

Now,  in  an  inscription  dated  in  A.  D.  948,  which  was 
found  at  Buddha-Gaya,  and  translated  by  Sir  Charles  Wil- 
kins,! the  author  of  the  record  ascribes  the  building  of  this 

* Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  465. 

f See  Plate  IV.  for  a plan  of  the  temple,  and  Plate  V.  for  the  pedestal. 
X Bengal  Asiatic  Researches,  vol.  I. 


Plate  IV. 

A.  Cunmiig'  del 

Lith:  Soxrv:  Geji1*  Office  Cal  June  1&7> 


Plate  V 



temple,  and  the  erection  of  an  image  of  Buddha,  to  the  illus- 
trious Amara  Deva,  who  is  stated  to  have  been  one  of  the 
nine  gems  of  the  court  of  King  Vikramaditya.  The  last  fact 
serves  at  once  to  identify  Amara  Deva  with  Amara  Sinha, 
the  author  of  the  Amara  Kosha,  who,  as  a contemporary  of 
Vordha  Mihira  and  Kdlidds,  must  have  lived  in  A.  3).  500. 
In  this  inscription  the  temple  is  said  to  have  been  erected  in 
compliance  with  the  command  of  Buddha  himself,  conveyed 
to  him  in  a vision.  Here  then  we  have  the  same  story  that 
is  found  in  Hwen  Thsang.  In  both  statements,  a Brahman 
in  a vision  receives  command  from  a deity  to  build  a temple 
with  an  enshrined  figure  of  a god.  The  correspondence  is 
complete,  excepting  only  one  curious  point  of  difference  in 
the  name  of  the  god,  whom  the  Buddhist  Hwen  Thsang  des- 
cribes as  the  Brahmanical  Mahadeva,  hut  whom  the  Brah- 
manist  recorder  of  the  inscription  calls  Buddha  himself. 

The  holy  places  at  Buddha- Gaya  were  visited  between 
A.  D.  399  and  414  by  another  Chinese  pilgrim  Ea-Hian,  hut 
his  account  of  them  is  unfortunately  very  brief.  It  is,  how- 
ever, sufficient  to  show  that  there  was  no  temple  in  existence 
at  that  date.  Ea-Hian  notes  the  spot  where  Buddha,  seated 
on  a stone  under  a great  tree,  eat  some  rice  presented  to  him 
by  two  maidens.  I he  stone  still  existed,  and  is  described  by 
him  as  about  6 feet  in  length  and  breadth,  and  2 feet  in 
height.*  Now,  there  is  a large  circular  stone,  5 feet  74  inches 
in  diameter  and  about  2 feet  high,  in  the  small  temple  of 
Vcigeswari  Devi,  which  from  its  dimensions  would  seem  to  be 
the  identical  stone  described  by  Ea-Hian.  It  is  a blue  stone 
streaked  with  whitish  veins,  and  the  surface  is  covered  with 
concentric  circles  of  various  minute  ornaments.  The  second 
circle  is  composed  of  Vcijras  only.  The  third  is  a wavy  scroll, 
filled  with  figures  of  men  and  animals.  These  circles  occupy 
a breadth  of  15  inches,  leaving  in  the  centre  a plain  circle, 
3 feet  14  inches  in  diameter,  inside  which  is  a square.  This 
simple  stone  I believe  to  be  the  same  as  that  mentioned  by 
Hwen  Thsang  as  a blue  stone  with  remarkable  veins. f 

Erom  all  the  facts  which  I have  brought  forward,  such 
as  the  non-existence  of  any  temple  in  A.  1).  400,  the  recorded 
erection  of  a large  one  by  Amara  Deva  about  A.  H.  500,  and 


* Beal’s  Fa-Hian,  c.  XXXI. 
f Julien’s  Ilweu  Thsang,  II„  471. 



tlic  exact  agreement  in  size  as  well  as  in  material  and  orna- 
mentation between  the  existing  temple  and  that  described  by 
Hwen  Thsang  between  A.  D.  629  and  642,  I feel  satisfied 
that  the  present  lofty  temple  is  the  identical  one  that  was 
built  by  the  celebrated  Amara  Sinha  about  A.  D.  500. 

Further  information  regarding  this  temple  is  to  he  found 
in  the  Burmese  inscription  discovered  at  Buddha-Gaya  by 
the  Burmese  Mission  in  1833,  and  translated  by  Colonel 
Burney.*  Another  earlier  translation  by  Batna  Pala  was 
published  by  James  Prinsep.  In  this  inscription  the  dates 
have  been  read  differently  by  the  two  translators  ; Batna 
Pula  and  James  Prinsep  reading  667  and  668,  while  Colonel 
Burney  and  his  Burmese  assistants  read  467  and  468.  I 
have  carefully  copied  this  inscription,  and  I am  thus  enabled 
to  state  positively  that  Colonel  Burney  was  certainly  wrong 
in  adopting  the  earlier  date  'in  compliance  with  the  views  of 
the  Burmese  priests,  whose  object  it  was  to  reconcile  the 
date  of  the  inscription  with  their  own  history.  James 
Prinsep  remained  unconvinced  by  Colonel  Burney’s  argu- 
ments, and  appended  a note  to  his  translation,  in  which  he 
states  that  the  first  figure  of  the  upper  date  might  be  a little 
doubtful,  but  that  the  first  six  of  the  lower  date  seemed  to 
him  quite  plain,  and  essentially  different  from  the  four  which 
occurs  in  the  second  line  of  the  inscription.  The  two  dates 
of  667  and  668  of  the  Burmese  era,  as  read  by  Batna  Pala, 
correspond  with  A.  D.  1305  and  1306. 

In  this  Burmese  inscription,  the  erection  of  the  original 
temple  is  ascribed  to  Asoka,  as  recorded  also  by  Hwen 
Thsang.  Having  become  ruined,  it  is  said  to  have  been  re- 
built by  a priest  named  Naik  Mahanta  according  to  Batna 
Pala,  or  by  a lord  named  Penthagu-gyi  by  Colonel  Barney. 
Where  the  term  “ priest”  is  used  by  Batna  Pala,  Colonel 
Burney  gives  <c  lord,”  because,  as  he  states,  it  is  not  now 
customary  to  say  tci-youk  of  a priest,  although  in  former 
times  both  priests  and  laymen  are  said  to  have  been  styled 
youk.  The  Burmese  affix  gyi,  which  means  “ great,”  has 
apparently  been  translated  into  the  Indian  Nayak  or  Chief ; 
and  Penthagu,  which  Colonel  Burney  regards  as  a proper 
name,  and  which  would,  therefore,  be  Pensagu  in  Indian  pro- 
nunciation, is  rendered  Mahanta  by  Batna  Pala.  I cannot 

* Bengal  Asiatic  Researches,  XX.,  197  ; and  Journal,  Bengal  Asiatic  Society,  1S34,  p.  214. 



Plate  VII 


Plate  VI 

No.  1 Pavement  Slab  of  Great  Temple,  S 1385. 

No.  2 Pavement  Slab  of  Great  Temple  S 1383. 

A.  Cunningham  del  Fhatoziiicogrsphed  at  tlie  S«rrve7or  CrexusraTa  Office  Calcutta , 



pretend  to  reconcile  these  differences  myself ; but  I submitted 
a copy  of  tbe  inscription  to  Sir  Arthur  Pliayre,  whose  inti- 
mate knowledge,  both  of  the  Burmese  language  and  of  the 
Buddhist  history,  entitles  him  to  give  an  authoritative  opi- 
nion on  the  disputed  points  of  this  interesting  record.  He 
reads  the  two  dates  as  6G7  and  660,  corresponding  with  A.  D. 
1305  and  1298.*  One  thing  is  quite  clear,  if  these  different 
records  are  to  he  reconciled,  namely,  that  Benthagu-gyi  (or 
Naik  Mcihanta ) should  represent  the  Brahman  of  Hwen 
Thsang,  and  also  the  celebrated  Amara  Deva  of  Wilkin’s 

The  Burmese  inscription  goes  on  to  say  that  the  temple, 
after  being  again  destroyed,  was  re-built  by  King  Thado. 
Then  having  once  more  become  ruinous,  the  “Lord  of  the 
White  Elephant”  and  the  great  “ King  of  Righteousness” 
deputed  Sri  Dliarmmapada  Majaguna  to  re-build  it  for  a 
third  time.  After  some  delay,  the  work  was  begun  in  A.  D. 

1305,  and  the  temple  was  consecrated  in  the  following  year 


The  granite  pavement  both  inside  the  temple  and  in  the 
court-yard  outside  is  covered  with  rudely  carved  figures 
kneeling  in  adoration  after  the  manner  of  the  Burmese  Shiko. 
Two  specimens  are  given  in  Plate  VI.  with  their  accom- 
panying inscriptions.  The  upper  one  is  dated  in  Samvat 
1385  or  A.  D.  1328,  and  the  lower  one  three  years  later. 
The  inscriptions  record  the  names  of  the  worshippers.  On  the 
left  of  the  upper  slab  the  inscription  gives  the  name  of  a 
Thakur  and  of  two  Tkakurins,  no  doubt  his  wives,  one  of 
whom  is  called  Jdjo.  Erom  the  representation  of  a stupa  as 
the  object  of  worship  on  the  right  of  the  upper  slab,  it  would 
appear  that  at  least  one  holy  stupa  was  still  standing  at  so 
late  a date  as  A.  D.  1328. 

In  front  of  the  Great  Temple  there  is  a small  open 
temple  of  four  pillars  covering  a large  circular  stone,  with 
two  human  feet  carved  upon  it.  This  temple  is  now  called 
Buddha-pad ; but  there  can  be  little  doubt  that  it  is  the 
same  which  is  mentioned  in  the  Amara  Deva’s  inscription 
under  the  name  of  Vishnu-pad  or  “ Vishnu’s  feet.”  Origin- 
ally the  feet  may  have  been  those  of  Buddha,  which,  on  the 

* In  a private  letter  dated  9tlx  Jlarcli  18C9. 




decline  of  Buddhism,  were  quietly  appropriated  to  Vishnu  by 
the  accommodating  Brahmans.  There  is  a short  Nagari  in- 
scription on  the  east  side  of  the  stone,  giving  the  date  of 
Sake  1230,  which  is  equivalent  to  A.  D.  1308.* 

There  are  other  points  of  interest  connected  with  the 
building  of  the  Great  Temple  at  Buddha-Gava,  such  as  the 
date  of  the  Bralnnanist  King  Sasdngka,  who  rooted  up  the 
Bodlii  tree,  and  placed  an  image  of  Mahadeva  in  the  temple, 
as  well  as  the  date  of  his  contemporary  the  Buddhist  Kurna 
Varmma,  who  renewed  the  Bodhi  tree. 

Close  to  the  Great  Temple  there  is  a small  plain  Samddh, 
or  cenotaph,  over  the  remains  of  the  earliest  Brahmanical 
Mahant.  This  is  of  no  interest  in  itself,  but  the  vestibule 
in  front  is  supported  on  nine  square  sand-stone  pillars,  which 
have  once  formed  part  of  a Buddhist  railing,  similar  to  those 
at  Sanclii  near  Bhilsa,  and  which  cannot  be  of  much  later 
date  than  Asoka.  Many  similar  pillars,  but  of  granite, 
support  the  arcades  in  one  of  the  courts  of  the  Mahant’s 
residence.  A few  of  them  bear  an  inscription  in  the  ancient 
Pali  characters  of  Asoka’s  well  known  records,  Ay  aye 
Kuragiye  danam,  that  is,  “ Gift  to  the  holy  Kuragi.”  There 
are  altogether  33  of  these  pillars  still  remaining,  of  which  five 
or  six  hear  the  above  inscription.  As  the  pillars  are  all  sculp- 
tured, the  value  of  the  gift  made  to  the  holy  Kuragi 
could  not  have  been  less  than  10,000  Rupees.  Some  of  the 
sculptured  bas-reliefs  on  these  pillars  are  highly  interesting. 
They  show  the  Buddhistic  belief  of  the  donor  in  the  venera- 
tion for  solid  towers  and  trees ; they  show  the  style  of  archi- 
tecture in  the  representations  of  temples,  houses,  gates  and 
city  walls ; and  the  costumes  of  the  people  in  the  dresses  of 
the  king,  and  of  other  worshippers  of  each  sex.f 

Of  the  33  ancient  pillars  above  described,  there  are  10 
of  sand-stone  from  some  distant  quarry,  and  23  of  granite 
from  the  neighbouring  hills.  They  are  all  of  the  same 
•dimensions  and  of  the  same  age ; but  as  the  two  sets  of 

* See  Plate  VII.  for  a view  of  this  famous  stone. 

+ See  Plate  VII.  for  the  inscription,  and  Plates  VIII.,  IX.,  X.  and  XI.,  for  the  pillars  of 
the  Buddhist  railing  and  their  sculptured  medallions.  The  excavations  which  have  since 
been  made  by  Government,  on  my  recommendation,  have  brought  to  light  a similar  series 
of  granite  pillars,  which  form  an  oblong  colonnade  surrounding  the  Great  Temple,  131  feet 
from  east  to  west,  and  96  feet  from  north  to  south.  Several  of  the  lower  horizontal  rails 
are  still  attached  to  the  broken  pillars. 



Pl-’.te  VIII 



Plate  IX 

Buddhist  Railing-  - Middle  Pillars. 
Upper  Basrdiefs 

A.  Cunning-ham  del  Xith  Surv  Crem-l?  Office  Cal  June  1871 


Plate  X 

Buddhist  Railing-Middle  Pillars, 
Upper  Basreliefs. 





A.  Cunningham,  del. 

^orazmcogrHju  • £Jf  Die  ^jxrveyr-''  ' -a- pal  s 0££  ••  Calcutta 


Plate  XI 

Buddhist  Railing-Middle  Pillars 
Centre  Bus  reliefs. 




A.  Cannii  lei 


i )i  ■^•zixu-ogrsphe'l  a*  the  Surveyor  •fHurraTft  Otiiee  Calcutta . 



pillars  were  found  in  different  localities,  although  not  far 
apart,  I believe  that  they  originally  formed  different  enclosures. 
The  sand-stone  pillars  are  said  to  have  been  found  at  the 
southern  side  of  the  Great  Temple,  and  close  to  the  holy 
Pipal  tree.  I believe,  therefore,  that  they  originally  formed 
an  enclosure  round  the  Bodhi  tree  itself.  The  granite  pillars 
are  said  to  have  been  discovered  about  50  yards  to  the  east  of 
the  Great  Temple ; and  I think  it  probable  that  they  once 
formed  an  enclosure  either  round  the  stupa  which  stood  on 
the  spot  where  Buddha  received  a howl  of  rice  and  milk  from 
two  milkmaids.  According  to  Hwen  Thsang,  this  stupa  was 
to  the  south-west  of  the  Great  Temple.* 

To  the  south-east  of  the  Great  Temple  there  is  a small 
tank  called  Budhokar  Toil,  which  exactly  answers  the 
description  given  by  the  Chinese  pilgrim  of  the  tank  of  the 
dragon  Muchalinda.  f This  agreement  is  so  striking,  that  it 
was  seen  at  once  by  the  members  of  the  Burmese  Embassy. 

There  are  two  ruined  small  temples  to  the  east  of  the 
Great  Temple,  the  nearer  one  being  called  Tara  Devi , and 
the  further  one  Vageswari  Devi.  But  the  former  temple 
contains  only  a standing  male  figure,  with  a short  inscription 
over  the  right  shoulder  in  characters  of  about  A.  D.  1000, 
Sri  Buddha-Ddsasya,  “ (the  gift)  of  the  fortunate  slave  of 
Buddha.”  The  goddess  Tara  belongs  to  the  later  days  of 
Buddhism,  after  the  introduction  of  Tantrika  doctrines.  The 
other  temple  contains  a seated  male  figure,  holding  a lotus 
in  his  left  hand,  and  sword  in  his  uplifted  right  hand,  with 
a Buddhist  tope  or  solid  tower  on  each  side  of  him. 

To  the  north  of  the  Bodhi  tree  there  is  a ruined  fortress 
of  earth  1,500  feet  long  by  1,000  feet  broad,  attributed  to 
Baja  Amara  Sinha  Suvira.  This  is  possibly  the  same  person 
as  the  Amara  Deva  who  built  the  Great  Temple,  as  the  arched 
passage  leading  to  the  temple  is  said  to  have  been  built  for 
the  convenience  of  Amara  Sinha’s  Bani  when  returning  from 
her  morning  bath  in  the  Nilajan  Biverto  pay  her  devotions  at 
the  shrine.  The  preservation  of  the  title  of  Sinha  down  to  the 
present  day  would  seem  to  strengthen  the  supposition  of 
Amara  Deva’s  identity  with  the  author  of  the  Amara  Kosha. 

* I venture  to  make  this  guess,  as  k&ra  or  k&r  is  the  Sanskrit  name  for  “ boiled 
rice,”  and  Tcuragi  may,  therefore,  have  been  the  name  of  the  holy  spot  where  Buddha 
accepted  the  offering  of  the  milkmaids.  Kuragi  means  also  a measure  of  land  in  Mahratti  ; 
the  inscription  may,  therefore,  mean  simply  “ Gift  to  the  holy  spot  of  land.” 

f Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  478. 



The  remaining  antiquities  at  Buddha-Gaya  consist  of 
numerous  Buddhist  statues  of  all  sizes,  some  placed  in  small 
temples,  and  others  scattered  about  the  ruins ; but  the  great- 
est number  of  them,  and  by  far  the  finest,  are  fixed  in  the 
walls  of  the  Mahant’s  residence. 

The  existing  inscriptions  at  Buddha-Gaya  are  few  in 
number,  and,  with  one  exception,  they  are  of  little  im- 
portance. Two  valuable  inscriptions,  translated  by  Wilkins 
and  James  Prinsep,  are  no  longer  to  be  found;  nor  does 
the  Mahant  know  anything  about  them.  This  is  the  more 
to  be  regretted,  as  the  former  was  the  record  already  quoted 
of  Amara  I) era,  and  the  other  had  a doubtful  date  which 
might  have  been  re-examined.  In  searching  for  these,  how- 
ever, I found  a new  inscription  in  the  pavement  of  the  gate- 
way of  the  Mahant’s  residence.  The  tenon  hinge  of  the  gate 
works  in  a socket  formed  in  the  very  middle  of  the  inscrip- 
tion. There  are  two  socket  holes,  the  second  one  having 
belonged  to  an  older  gate,  or  having  been  cut  in  the  wrong 
position.  This  inscription  opens  with  an  invocation  to 


To  the  eastward  of  Buddha-Gaya,  on  the  opposite  bank 
of  the  Phalgu  or  Lilajan  River,  and  immediately  to  the  north 
of  the  village  of  Bakror,  there  are  the  ruins  of  a large  brick 
tope,  with  a stump  of  a sand-stone  pillar  at  a short  distance 
to  the  northward.  The  ruined  mound,  which  is  called  Katani, 
is  150  feet  in  diameter  at  base,  and  50  feet  high.  It  is  built 
of  the  usual  large  bricks,  15^  x 10-}-  x 3}-.  Several  excava- 
tions have  been  made  in  it  in  search  of  bricks  and  treasure. 
About  70  years  ago  numerous  lac  seals,  impressed  with  a 
figure  of  Buddha,  were  found  in  excavating  this  tope.  These 
are  engraved  in  Moor’s  Hindu  Pantheon,  Plate  LXX.,  Figures 
6,  7,  and  8,  where  they  are  said  to  have  been  dug  up  at 
Buddha-Gaya.  My  information  was,  however,  derived  from 
the  Mahant  himself ; and  as  Bakror  is  only  half  a mile  to  the 
eastward,  it  would  have  been  more  correct  to  have  described 
the  locality  as  near , instead  of  at,  Buddha-Gaya.  The  stump 
of  the  pillar,  which  is  still  in  situ,  is  3 feet  0^  inch  in  diameter, 
and  there  is  another  fragment  near  a well  to  the  north-west  that 
measures  3 feet  0}-  inch  in  diameter.  Both  of  these  pieces 
belong  to  the  rough  bottom  portion  of  the  pillar,  which  must 

Plor-t  271. 



of  the  Ruins  at 



_ . artinq 

vv.muShF  1 

JJt*okaf  Tell 

B Dew  Temple. 

Fiftal  Tru,  * 

5 C*lL*.  of  Feu. 


of  the  Rviins  at 
K U R K I H A R. 

Scale  of  Feet 

• ■ , ■ ,T,  ■ t..L.g 

Mound,  of  Ruins  with, 
numerous  Statue#. 

Coles  sal  .statue'  of  Buddha 

/ necribed.  Statue*  of  B uddha. 

and  other  figures, 
ywtnerovu  Votive'  Stupa# 
of  granite ■. 

Buirted  Forts,  with-  Solid 
brock  wails . 

SitgaT-ghar,  120  feet  Square*, 
IS  feet  high;. 

c\.  Cunningham,  del 


three*  Isolated  mils 


Litho.  at  the  Survr.  Genl’s.  Office,  Cal.  August  1371 




have  been  imbedded  in  masonry.  The  shaft  of  this  pillar  is 
said  to  have  been  taken  to  Gaya  by  a former  Magistrate. 
Accordingly  in  Sahebganj,  or  the  new  city  of  Gaya,  there 
is  a sand-stone  pillar  2 feet  4§  inches  in  diameter,  and  up- 
wards of  16  feet  in  height,  which  was  set  up  as  a central 
point  in  Sahebganj,  as  recorded  in  a Persian  inscription  by 
Charles  Badom  Saheb  (Boddam)  in  A.  D.  1789. 

The  tope  and  pillar  of  Bakror  were  visited  by  Hwen 
Thsang,  who  relates  a story  regarding  the  capture  by  a 
certain  king  of  an  “Elephant  of  Perfume”  ( gandha-hasti)  * 
In  a former  existence,  as  a Bodhisatwa,  Buddha  was  said  to 
have  been  the  son  of  this  Elephant,  and  a stupa  and  pillar 
had  accordingly  been  erected  in  commemoration  of  the 
tradition.  There  was  also  a sacred  tank,  which  is,  perhaps, 
represented  by  a small  walled  tank  generally  called  Mdrttand 
Bokhar  or  Suraj  Kund,  that  is,  the  “Tank  of  the  Sun.” 
It  is  also  called  Buddhakund  ; but  this  name  was  applied 
by  some  to  a large  unwalled  tank  about  800  feet  square, 
immediately  to  the  north  of  the  small  tank.  An  annual 
fair  is  held  at  the  Suraj  Kund,  when  thousands  of  pil- 
grims assemble  to  bathe  in  its  holy  waters.  They  sit  in 
the  water  in  rows,  and  repeat,  after  their  attendant  Brah- 
mans, the  names  of  all  the  holy  places  around  Gaya.  The 
ancient  name  of  Bakror  is  said  to  have  been  Ajayapura. 


The  village  of  Punawa  is  situated  14  miles  to  the  eastward 
of  Gaya,  between  two  hills  of  grey  granite.  To  the  north 
there  is  a fine  old  square  tank  called  Budhokar  Tdl,  and  to 
the  east  another  tank  called  Karamar  Tdl.  The  principal 
object  is  a pillared  temple  of  Trilokndth.  As  it  stands  at 
present,  this  temple  is  a modern  work  made  up  of  different 
sized  pillars  of  various  patterns,  some  with  and  others  without 
capitals,  so  as  to  bring  them  to  the  required  height.  Pilasters 
have  even  been  made  use  of  as  whole  pillars,  with  the  old 
rough  engaged  backs  left  exposed.  One  of  the  doorways  of 
hard  blue  stone  is  richly  sculptured.  In  the  centre  is  a figure 
of  the  ascetic  Buddha,  with  a three-pointed  crown  over  his 
head,  and  on  each  side  of  him  nine  figures  with  joined  hands 

Julieu’s  Hwen  Tlisang,  III.,  1. 



kneeling  towards  him.  The  other  doorways  are  of  granite, 
and,  though  very  plain,  are  evidently  of  the  same  age  as  the 
more  highly  ornamented  one.* 

Several  statues  and  granite  pillars  of  different  sizes  are 
scattered  about  the  foot  of  the  hills.  Portions  of  the  usual 
Buddhist  formula,  “ Ye  Dharmma ,”  &c.,  are  found  upon 
some  of  the  statues.  There  are  no  dates  in  any  of  these 
inscriptions,  but  the  style  of  their  letters  fixes  their  date  at 
about  A.  D.  1000.  To  the  north-west,  on  a mound  60  feet 
square,  there  are  five  broken  pillars  and  a broken  statue  of 
the  three-headed  goddess  Vajra-Varahi,  one  of  the  principal 
objects  of  worship  amongst  the  later  Buddhists.  Two  of 
her  heads  are  human,  but  the  third  is  that  of  a hog,  and  on 
the  pedestal  there  are  seven  hogs.  The  ruined  temple  on 
this  mound  is  called  Narting. 


About  three  miles  to  the  north-east  of  Punawa  is  the 
large  village  of  Kurkihar.  It  is  not  to  be  found  in  any  of 
our  maps,  not  even  in  No.  103  sheet  of  the  Indian  Atlas, 
although  it  is  perhaps  the  largest  place  between  the  cities  of 
Gaya  and  Bihar.  The  remains  at  Kurkihar  consist  of  several 
ruined  mounds,  in  wPich  numerous  statues  and  small  votive 
topes  of  dark  blue  stone  have  been  found.  The  principal 
mass  of  ruin,  about  600  feet  square,  lies  immediately  to  the 
south  of  the  village.*  A second  less  extensive  mound  lies  to 
the  south-west ; and  there  is  a small  mound,  only  120  feet 
square,  to  the  north  of  the  village.  The  last  mound  is 
called  Sugatgarh,  or  the  “ house  of  Sugatci,”  one  of  the  well 
known  titles  of  Buddha.  In  the  principal  mass  of  ruin,  the 
late  Major  Kittoe  dug  up  a great  number  of  statues  and 
votive  topes ; and  a recent  excavation  on  the  west  side 
showed  the  solid  brick-work  of  a Buddhist  stupa.  In  the 
north-Avest  corner  of  this  excavation  the  relic  chamber  had 
been  reached,  and  I was  privately  informed  that  a small 
figure  and  some  other  remains  had  been  discovered  inside. 
But  the  head  man  of  the  village  stoutly  denied  that  anything 
had  been  found,  and  all  the  villagers  then  denied  the  discovery 

* See  riate  XII. 

Plate  XIII. 


1.  Four-armed  Female  Statue— Xapatya. 

I — 

2 Bas-relief  of  Ashta-Sakti. 

3.  Six-armed  Male  Figure  Standing. 

4<l%4)iw\5  g ^c5. 

ftrWIWW  \I  s^^x2*^ 

4 Broken  Pedestal. 





5.  Son-Bhandar  Cave. 

J%  ^VrJ-TP  eu  *7  u 3g  c£  & - *5 

cu  z^-o/AP- 


6.  Seated  Male  Figure. 

<?f2|  3 4 W I ?• * q <%'< *%> ^5 

^ -mQVf 



7.  Architrave. 

^ala^  5 wq.  wih&  **\vw  frffovy?  H*ftn 

A.  Cunningham  del. 

Fh-jtc.nnco^aph.ed.  a*  lie  Sur^eTyr  General's  Office  Calcutta.. 



The  principal  statue  is  a squatted  figure  of  the  ascetic 
Buddha  under  the  holy  Pipal  tree,  or  Bodhi-drum.  Overhead 
there  is  a representation  of  the  Nirvana,  or  death  of  Buddha, 
and  on  the  pedestal  there  is  an  inscription  in  three  lines,  which 
is  incomplete  owing  to  the  loss  of  a projecting  corner  of  the 
base.  To  the  right  and  left  there  are  smaller  figures  of  Mdyd 
standing  under  the  Sal  tree  at  the  birth  of  Buddha,  and  of 
Buddha  himself  teaching  the  law  at  Banaras  after  his  first 
attainment  of  Buddhaliood.  On  the  mound  to  the  east  there 
is  a standing  figure  of  Buddha,  with  a small  attendant  figure 
holding  an  umbrella  over  him.  As  this  attendant  has  three 
heads,  I believe  that  it  represents  the  Hindu  Triad  in  the 
humble  position  of  a servitor  of  Buddha. 

At  the  north-east  corner  of  the  village  there  is  a small 
rude  Hindu  temple  of  brick,  in  and  about  which  a large 
number  of  statues  have  been  collected.  The  temple  is  dedi- 
cated to  Baglieswari  Devi  (Vyaghreswari),  but  the  principal 
figure  inside  is  a life-size  statue  of  the  eight-armed  Burgd 
conquering  the  Maheshasur  or  Buffalo  demon.  The  figure 
pointed  out  to  me  as  that  of  Bagheswari  was  a four-armed 
female  seated  on  a lion  with  a child  in  her  lap ; but  I believe 
that  this  figure  represents  either  Indrdni  with  her  son  the 
infant  Jayanta,  or  Skasti,  the  goddess  of  fecundity,  a form 
of  Burga.  The  principal  figure  outside  the  temple  is  a life- 
size  statue  of  AJcshobya,  who  is  represented  squatted  under 
the  Bodhi  tree,  in  the  same  manner  as  the  ascetic  Buddha, 
with  the  left  hand  in  the  lap,  and  the  right  hand  hanging 
over  the  knee.  There  is  a halo  round  the  head  inscribed 
with  the  usual  Buddhist  formula,  “ Ye  Bliarmma ,”  &c. ; and 
near  the  head  there  is  a short  inscription  giving  the  name  of 
the  figure  “ Tun  Akshobya-vajra,  hun 

I procured  several  short  but  interesting  inscriptions  at 
Kurkihar.  The  name  of  Sakala  is  mentioned  in  several  of 
them,  and  also  Kerala  in  DaJcshinades .*  The  age  of  these 
inscriptions,  judging  from  the  shapes  of  the  letters,  must  be 
about  A.  D.  800  to  1000. 

The  true  name  of  Kurkihar  is  said  to  be  Kurak-vihar, 
which  I believe  to  be  only  a contracted  form  of  Kukkuta- 
pdda  Vilidra  or  “temple  of  the  cock’s  foot,”  which  must 
have  been  connected  with  the  Kukkuta-pdda-giri  or 

* See  Plate  XIII. 



Cock’s-foot  kill,  which  is  described  by  both  Fa-Hian  and  Ilwen 
Tbsang*  The  Sanskrit  Kukkuta  is  the  same  word  as  the 
Hindi  Kukkar  or  Kurak , a cock,  so  that  Kurak-vilidr  is 
clearly  the  same  appellation  as  Kukkuta-pdda  Vihdra. 
There  was  a monastery  also  of  the  same  'name,  but  this  was 
close  to  Tdtaliputra  or  Patna.  The  Kukkuta-pada-giri  was 
a tlirce-peaked  bill,  which  Avas  celebrated  as  the  abode  of  the 
great  Kdsyapa,  as  well  as  the  scene  of  his  death.  On  this 
account  it  vras  also  called  Guru-pddci-parvata , or  “ Teacher’s- 
foot  hill.  The  situation  of  Kurkihdr  corresponds  exactly 
with  Fa-Hian’s  account,  excepting  that  there  is  no  tliree- 
peaked  hill  in  its  neighbourhood.  There  are,  however,  three 
bare  and  rugged  hills  which  rise  boldly  out  of  the  plain 
about  half  a mile  to  the  north  of  the  village.  .As  these 
three  hills  touch  one  another  at  their  bases,  I think  that  they 
may  fairly  be  identified  with  the  three-peaked  hill  of  Hwen 


From  the  neighbourhood  of  Gaya  two  parallel  ranges 
of  hills  stretch  towards  the  north-east  for  about  36  miles 
to  the  bank  of  the  Panckana  Fiver,  just  opposite  the  village  of 
Giryek.  The  eastern  end  of  the  southern  range  is  much 
depressed,  but  the  northern  range  maintains  its  height,  and 
ends  abruptly  in  two  lofty  peaks  overhanging  the  Panckana 
Fiver. f The  loAver  peak  on  the  east  is  crowned  with  a solid 
tower  of  brick-work,  well  known  as  Jarasandha-ka-baithak,  or 
“ Jarasandka’s  throne,”  Avhile  the  higher  peak  on  the  west, 
to  which  the  name  of  Giryek  peculiarly  belongs,  bears  an 
oblong  terrace  covered  Avith  the  ruins  of  several  buildings. 
The  principal  ruin  would  appear  to  lnive  been  a viliar,  or 
temple,  on  the  highest  point  of  the  terrace,  which  was 
approached  by  a steep  flight  of  steps  leading  through  pillared 

The  ttro  peaks  are  connected  by  a steep  pavement, 
which  was  formerly  continued  down  to  the  foot  of  the  hill 
opposite  the  village  of  Giryek.  At  all  the  commanding 
points  and  bends  of  this  road  are  still  to  be  seen  the  stone 
foundations  of  small  brick  stupas  from  5 and  6 feet  to  up-' 
wards  of  12  feet  in  diameter.  At  the  foot  of  the  upper 

* Beal’s  Fa-Hian,  c.  XXIII.  ; and  Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  III.,  6. 
+ See  Plates  III.  and  XIV.  for  the  position  of  Giryek. 

RAJ6IR  ano  6IRYEK. 

Prate  XIV. 



slope,  and  within  50  feet  of  Jarasandha’s  Tower,  a tank  100 
feet  square  has  been  formed,  partly  by  excavation,  and  partly 
by  building  up.  There  is  a second  tank,  at  a short  distance 
to  the  north,  formed  by  the  excavation  of  the  rock  for  build- 
ing materials.  Both  of  these  tanks  are  now  drv. 

The  stupa,  called  Jarasandha-ka-baithaJc,  is  a solid 
cylindrical  brick  tower,  28  feet  in  diameter,  and  21  feet  in 
height,  resting  on  a square  basement  11  feet  high.  The 
cylinder  was  once  surmounted  by  a solid  dome  or  hemisphere 
of  brick,  of  which  only  6 feet  now  remain,  and  this  dome 
must  have  been  crowned  with  the  usual  umbrella  rising  out 
of  a square  base.  The  total  height  of  the  building  could 
not,  therefore,  have  been  less  than  55  feet  or  thereabouts.  The 
surface  has  once  been  thickly  plastered,  and  the  style  of 
ornamentation  is  similar  to  that  of  the  Great  Temple  at 
Buddha  Gaya.*  I sank  a shaft  11  feet  in  depth  from  the  top 
of  the  building  right  down  to  the  stone  foundation ; and  I 
continued  a gallery,  which  had  been  begun  many  years  ago, 
at  the  base  of  the  cylinder,  until  it  met  the  well  sunk  from 
above,  but  nothing  whatever  was  discovered  in  either  of  these 
excavations  to  show  the  object  of  the  building. 

On  the  west  side  of  Jarasandha’s  Towner,  and  almost 
touching  its  basement,  I observed  a low  mound  which  seem- 
ed like  the  ruin  of  another  stupa.  On  clearing  the  top, 
however,  I found  a small  chamber  5 feet  8 inches  square, 
filled  with  rubbish.  This  chamber  gradually  widened  as  it 
was  cleared  out,  until  it  became  7 feet  square.  At  5-|  feet 
in  depth,  the  rubbish  gave  place  to  brick-work,  below  which 
was  a stratum  of  stone,  evidently  the  rough  foundation  of 
the  building.  In  the  south-west  corner  of  the  brick-work, 
about  one  foot  below  the  surface,  I found  81  seals  of  lac 
firmly  imbedded  in  the  mud  mortar.  The  seals  were  all  oval,  but 
of  different  sizes,  generally  about  3 inches  long  and  2 inches 
broad.  All,  however,  bore  the  same  impression  of  a large 
stupa  with  four  smaller  stupas  on  each  side,  the  whole  sur- 
rounded by  an  inscription  in  mediaeval  Nagari  characters, 
Ye  Dharmma  hetu  prabhava,  &c.,  being  the  well  known  for- 
mula of  the  Buddhist  faith.  Externally,  this  building  was 
square  with  projections  in  the  centre  of  each  face  and  similar 
in  its  ornamentations  to  the  basement  of  Jarasandha’s  Tower. 

* See  Plate  XV.  for  a sketch  of  this  stupa. 




On  tlie  eastern  side  of  the  Panchana  Paver,  there  is  an 
extensive  mound  of  ruins,  being  half  a mile  long  from  north 
to  south,  and  300  yards  broad  in  its  widest  part.  There  are 
the  remains  of  two  paved  ascents  on  the  river  side,  and  of 
three  more  on  the  opposite  side  of  the  mound.  In  the  middle 
of  the  mound  there  is  a small  mud  fort,  and  at  the  northern 
end  there  are  several  pieces  of  sculpture  collected  together 
from  different  places ; one  of  these  is  inscribed  and  dated  in 
the  year  42  of  some  unknown  era,  somewhere  about  the 
eleventh  century,  or  perhaps  even  somewhat  later. 

At  two  miles  to  the  south-west  of  the  village  of  Giryek, 
and  one  mile  from  Jarasandha’s  Tower,  there  is  a natural 
cavern  in  the  southern  face  of  the  mountain,  about  250  feet 
above  the  bed  of  the  Banganga  rivulet.  This  cave,  called 
Gidhad war,  is  generally  believed  to  communicate  with  Jaras- 
andha’s Tower ; hut  an  examination  with  torches  proved  it  to 
he  a natural  fissure  running  upwards  in  the  direction  of  the 
tower,  hut  only  98  feet  in  length.  The  mouth  of  the  cavern, 
is  10  feet  broad  and  17  feet  high  ; but  its  height  diminishes 
rapidly  towards  the  end.  The  cave  is  filled  with  bats,  and 
the  air  is  oppressively  warm  and  disagreeable,  which  alone 
is  sufficient  to  prove  that  there  is  no  exit  to  the  cavern 
otherwise  there  would  be  a draught  of  air  right  through  it. 
Vultures  swarm  about  the  precipitous  cliffs  of  pale  grey  horn 
stone,  and  I picked  up  their  feathers  in  the  mouth  of  the 

The  remains  at  Giryek,  which  I have  just  described, 
appear  to  me  to  correspond  exactly  with  the  accounts  given 
by  Ea-Hian  of  the  “ Hill  of  the  Isolated  Rock,”  where  Indra 
questioned  Buddha  on  42  points,  writing  each  of  them  singly 
with  his  finger  upon  a stone,  and  with  that  given  .by  Ilwen 
Thsang  of  the  hill  of  Indra-silci-guha,  which  refers  to  the 
same  story.*  Ea-Hian  states  that  traces  of  these  written 
questions  still  existed,  and  that  there  was  a monastery  built 
upon  the  spot,  hut  he  makes  no  mention  of  any  stupa. 
Hwen  Thsang  states  that  on  the  crest  of  the  hill  there  were 
marks  in  two  places  wdiere  the  four  former  Buddhas  had 
sat  and  walked.  On  the  eastern  peak  there  was  a stupa 
and  also  a monastery  called  the  “ JELansa  Sanghdrdma”  or 
“ Goose’s  Monastery,”  to  account  for  which  he  relates  the 

Beal’s  Fa-Hian,  c.  28  ; and  Jiilien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  III.,  58. 

Plate  XV. 

restored,  from 
still  existing 

A.  Cunningham,  del. 

rtotozmco^ri^liei  .S-.ur/tvrn:  'J-eneral'  :’£u-> 


from  the  South 



following  legend : One  clay,  when  taking  exercise,  a men- 
dicant, who  was  the  steward  of  the  monastery,  saw  a flock 
of  geese  high  in  the  air,  and  as  the  monks  of  his  fraternity, 
although  strictly  abstemious,  had  experienced  great  difficulty 
in  procuring  sufficient  food,  lie  exclaimed  playfully — 
“ To-day  the  pittance  of  the  monks  is  insufficient.  0 noble 
beings  (Malidsathcas)  you  ought  to  have  compassion  on 
our  circumstances.”  No  sooner  had  he  spoken  these  words, 
than  one  of  the  geese  fell  dead  at  his  feet.  The  horror-struck 
mendicant  ran  to  tell  the  tale  to  his  brethren,  who  became 
overwhelmed  with  grief.  “ Buddha,”  said  they#  “ established 
his  law  for  man’s  guidance  under  all  circumstances.  The 
Mahayana  (Great  Vehicle)  is  the  source  of  truth,  while  we 
have  foolishly  followed  the  doctrine  of  the  B. 'indy ana  (Lesser 
Vehicle).  Let  us  renounce  our  former  opinions.  This  goose 
has  taught  us  a salutary  lesson,  let  us  do  honour  to  her  emi- 
nent virtue  by  transmitting  it  to  the  most  distant  ages.” 
They  accordingly  built  a stupa  over  the  dead  goose,  which 
was  interred  in  the  base  of  the  monument,  and  adorned  it 
with  an  inscription  relating  the  pious  devotion  of  the  goose. 

If  my  identification  of  the  Giryek  Hill  with  the  Indra- 
sila-gulia  of  Hwen  Tlisang  is  correct,  there  can  be  little  doubt 
that  Jarasandha’s  Tower  is  the  very  stupa  that  was  built  in 
honour  of  the  devoted  goose.  Only  this  one  stupa  is  men- 
tioned by  Hwen  Thsang,  and  Jarasandha’s  Tower  is  the  only 
one  now  existing  on  the  hill.  In  further  corroboration  of 
this  identification,  I may  mention  that  close  by  I found  a 
broken  figure  with  a large  goose  carved  on  the  pedestal  ; and 
further,  that  one  of  the  stupas  on  the  lac  seals  found  on  the 
spot,  appears  to  bear  a goose  on  its  summit.  As  no  mention 
is  made  of  any  stupa  by  Ea-Hian,  the  erection  of  this  tower 
most  probably  took  place  between  his  date  and  that  of  Hwen 
Thsang,  or  about  A.  D.  500. 

The  position  of  Giryek  corresponds  so  exactly  both  in 
bearing  and  distance  with  that  of  the  hill  of  Indra-sila- 
guha,  that  I feel  quite  satisfied  of  their  identity..  No  etvmo- 
logv  has  yet  been  proposed  for  the  name  of  Giryek ; but  it 
seems  to  me  not  unlikely  that  it  is  nothing  more  than  Girl - 
eha,  “ one  hill,”  that  is,  the  Hill  of  the  Isolated  Eock 
of  Ea-Hian. 

Both  of  the  pilgrims  mention  the  cave  in  the  southern 
face  of  the  mountain,  which  corresponds  exactly  with  the 


natural  cavern  of  Gidha  Dwar,  which  I lmve  already  des- 
cribed. Gidlia  Dwar,  in  Sanskrit  Gridhra-dwdra,  means  the 
Vulture's  pass,  or  opening.  By  Ilwen  Tlisang  the  cave  is 
called  Indra-sila-guha,  or  “the  cave  of  Indra’s  stone,”  being 
thus  named  after  the  stone  on  which  were  delineated  the  42 
points  on  which  Indra  had  questioned  Buddha.  Fa-Hian 
adds  that  Indra  himself  drew  the  marks  upon  the  stone 
with  liis  finger. 

A second  cave  is  described  by  Hwen  Thsang  as  the 
Vulture’s  Cave  in  the  hill  called  Gridhra-kuta-parvata  “ or 
Vulture’s  Cave  hill.”*  This  name  was  derived  from  the  story 
of  Ananda’s  adventure  with  the  demon  Mara  in  the  shape  of 
a vulture.  The  demon  suddenly  stopped  before  the  cave  and 
terrified  Ananda,  when  Buddha  passing  his  hand  through  the 
rock  laid  hold  of  Ananda’s  arm,  and  at  once  removed  his 
fear.  The  cleft  in  the  rock  said  to  have  been  made  by  Bud- 
dha’s hand,  was  seen  by  Fa-Hian  early  in  the  5tli  century. t 
Major  Ivittoe  thought  that  the  Gidha  Dwdr  Cave  was  the 
Vulture’s  Cave  of  the  Chinese  pilgrims,  but  its  distance  of 
4^  miles  from  the  old  capital  of  Rajagriha  is  too  great,  as 
both  Fa-Hian  and  Ilwen  Thsang  place  the  Vulture’s  Cave 
at  15  li  from  old  Rajagriha,  that  is,  at  only  miles  from 
it.  This  cave  besides  answers  exactly  to  that  described  by 
Ilwen  Thsang  under  the  name  of  Indra-sila-gulia,  and 
the  two  caves  were  certainly  distinct.  I made  every  en- 
quiry for  another  cave,  but  could  only  hear  of  one  very 
close  to  that  of  Gidha  Dwdr,  which  was  quite  inacces- 
sible. But  taking  the  distance  and  direction  from  old 
Rajagriha,  the  Vulture’s  Cave  must  have  been  in  the  lofty 
precipitous  hill  now  called  Sila-giri,  or  the  “ Rocky  Moun- 
tain.” Gidha  Dwar  is  the  name  of  a narrow  pass  where  the 
two  parallel  ranges  of  hills  before  described  close  together 
within  two  miles  of  Giryek,  and  the  Gidha  Dwar  Cave  is 
immediately  above  the  pass. 

VII.  ft  A J G I It . 

Whatever  doubts  may  exist  regarding  the  identification 
of  Kurkihar  and  Giryek,  there  can  fortunately  be  none 

* Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  III.,  20. 
t Beal’s  Fa-Hian,  c.  29. 



respecting  Rdjgir,  as  the  representative  of  the  ancient  Rdja- 
griha.  The  name  is  still  preserved  in  the  modern  Rdjgir , 
and  I found  it  repeated  in  numerous  inscriptions  in  the  tem- 
ples on  the  Baibhar  and  Yipula  Mountains.  The  old  city  of 
Baj  agriha  is  described  by  Fa- Hi  an  as  situated  in  a valley 
between  five  hills,  at  4 li  (or  two-tliirds  of  a mile)  to  the 
south  of  the  new  town  of  Baj  agriha.  The  same  position  and 
about  the  same  distance  are  given  by  Hwen  Tlisang,  who 
likewise  mentions  the  hot  springs  which  exist  to  this  day.* 

The  old  city  of  Bajagrilia  is  called  Kusagarapura , or  the 
city  of  the  Kusa  grass,  by  Hwen  Tlisang,  who  further  des- 
cribes it  as  the  “ town  surrounded  by  mountains.”  This  last 
is  almost  a translation  of  Giri-vraja , or  the  city  of  “ many 
hills,”  which  is  the  old  name  of  the  capital  of  Jarasandha, 
preserved  both  in  the  Rdmdyana,  and  the  Mcilidbliarata.  Fa- 
Hian  states  that  the  “ five  hills  form  a girdle  like  the  walls 
of  a town,”  which  is  an  exact  description  of  the  site  of  old 
Bajgir.f  A similar  description  is  given  by  Tumour  from  the 
Pali  annals  of  Ceylon,  where  the  five  hills  are  named  Gijjlia - 
Jculo,  Isigili,  TPebliaro , TPepullo,  and  Pandawo.  In  the 
Maliabharata  the  five  hills  are  named  Pailidra,  Par  alia, 
Prishabha,  Rishigiri,  and  G baity  aka ; but  at  present  they  are 
called  Baibhdr-giri,  Pipiila-giri,  Ratna-giri,  Udaya-giri,  and 

In  the  inscriptions  of  the  Jain  temples  on  Mount  Baiblidr 
the  name  is  sometimes  written  Baibhara,  and  sometimes 
Pyavahdra.  It  is  beyond  all  doubt  the  TPeblidro  Mountain 
of  the  Pali  annals,  in  which  was  situated  the  far-famed  Sat- 
tapanni  Cave  in  front  of  which  was  held  the  first  Buddhist 
Synod  in  543  B.  C.  The  Baibhar  Hill  lies  to  the  west  of  the 
hot  springs,  and  the  Yipula  Hill  to  the  east.  In  Baibhar 
there  still  exists  a large  cave  called  Son-bhdnddr,  or  the 
“Treasury  of  Gold.”  The  situation  corresponds  exactly  with 
that  of  the  Pi-po-lo  cave  of  the  two  Chinese  pilgrims,  in 
which  Buddha  used  to  meditate  after  his  noon-day  meal.J 
The  famous  Sattaparmi  Cave  must  be  looked  for  in  the 

* Beal’s  Fa-Hian,  c.  28  ; and  Julien’s  Hwen  Tlisang,  I.,  159,  III.,  23. 

+ See  Plate  XIV.  for  the  relative  positions  of  these  five  hills. 
t Both  M.  Julien  (in  Hwen  Thsang,  III.,  24)  and  Mr.  Beal  (in  Fa-Hian,  c.  30)  read 
Pi-po-lo  as  the  Pippal  tree,  but  I would  suggest  that  it  may  be  only  the  Chinese  transcript 
of  Vaibhara.  As,  however,  the  great  cave  in  which  the  First  Synod  was  held  was  called  the 
cave  of  the  Nyagrodha  tree  (Banian,  see  Asiat.  Kes.  XX.,  91),  it  is  very  probable  that  this 
other  cave  was  called  the  Pippal  tree  cave. 



northern  face  of  the  south-west  end  of  the  mountain,  at  above 
one  mile  from  the  Son-bhandar  Cave. 

Mount  Vipula  is  clearly  identical  with  the  Wepullo  of 
the  Pali  annals,  and  as  its  summit  is  now  crowned  with  the 
ruins  of  a lofty  stupa  or  chaitya,  which  is  noticed  by  Hwen 
Thsang,  I would  identify  it  with  the  Chaityaka  of  the  Malid- 
bliarata.  llegarding  the  other  three  mountains,  I have 
nothing  at  present  to  offer,  but  I may  mention  that  they 
are  also  crowned  with  small  Jain  temples. 

The  old  city  between  the  hills  is  described  by  Pa-Hian 
to  be  5 or  6 li  from  east  to  west,  and  7 or  8 li  from  north  to 
south,  that  is,  from  2 4 to  28  li  or  4^  miles  in  circuit.  Hwen- 
Tlisang  makes  it  30  li  or  5 miles  in  circuit,  with  its  greatest 
length  from  east  to  west.  My  survey  of  the  ancient  ramparts 
gives  a circuit  of  24,500  feet,  or  4|th  miles,  which  is  between 
the  two  statements  of  the  Chinese  pilgrims.  The  greatest 
length  is  from  north-west  to  south-east,  so  that  there  is  no 
real  discrepancy  between  the  two  statements  as  to  the  direc- 
tion of  the  greatest  length  of  the  old  city.  Each  of  them  must 
have  taken  his  measurement  from  the  Nekpai  embankment 
on  the  east  (which  has  been  described  by  Major  Kittoe)  to 
some  point  on  the  north-west.  If  taken  to  the  Panch- 
Pandu  angle  of  the  ramparts,  the  direction  would  be  W.  N. 
W.,  and  the  length  upwards  of  8,000  feet ; but  if  taken  to 
the  temple  of  Torlia  Devi,  the  direction  would  be  N.  N.  W., 
and  the  distance  upwards  of  9,000  feet. 

I have  already  quoted  Ea-Hian’s  statement  that  the 
c*'  five  hills  form  a girdle  like  the  walls  of  a town.”  This 
agrees  with  Hwen  Thsang1  s description,  who  says  that  “ high 
mountains  surround  it  on  four  sides,  and  from  its  exterior 
walls,  which  have  a circuit  of  150  li  or  25  miles.  Eor  this 
number  I propose  to  read  50  li  or  8^-  miles,  a correction  which  is 
absolutely  necessary  to  make  the  statement  tally  with  the 
measurements  of  my  survey.  The  following  are  the  direct 
distances  between  the  hills  : 

1.  From  Baibhar  to  Vipula 

2.  „ Vipula  to  Ratna 

3.  „ Ratna  to  Udava 

4.  „ Udaya  to  Sona 

5.  „ Soua  to  Baibhar 

12,000  feet. 

4.500  „ 

8.500  „ 
7,000  „ 
9, 0U0  „ 

Total  . . . 

41,000  feet. 

RAJ  Gilt. 


This  is  somewhat  less  than  eight  miles  ; hut  if  the  ascents 
and  descents  are  taken  into  account,  the  actual  length  will 
correspond  very  closely  with  the  statement  of  Hwen  Thsang 
when  corrected  to  50  li.  The  old  walls  forming  this  exterior 
line  of  rampart  are  still  to  be  seen  in  many  places.  I traced 
them  from  Yipula-giri  over  Batna-girito  theNekpai  embank- 
ment, and  thence  onwards  over  Udaya-giri,  and  across  the 
southern  outlet  of  the  valley  to  Soua-giri.  At  this  outlet, 
the  walls,  which  are  still  in  good  order,  are  13  feet  thick. 
To  obtain  a circuit  of  25  miles,  as  given  in.  Hwen  Thsang’s 
text,  it  would  he  necessary  to  carry  these  ramparts  as  far  as 
Giryek  on  the  east.  As  similar  ramparts  exist  on  the  Giryek 
Hill,  it  is  perhaps  possible  that  Hwen  Thsang  intended  to  in- 
clude it  in  the  circuit  of  his  outer  walls.  But  this  immense 
circuit  would  not  at  all  agree  with  his  statement  that  " high 
mountains  surround  the  city  on  four  sides,”  for  the  distant 
Hill  of  Giryek  cannot  in  any  way  be  said  to  form  one  of  the 
sides  of  old  Bajagriha. 

The  new  town  of  Bajagriha  is  said  to  have  been  built  by 
King  Srenika,  otherwise  called  Bimbisdra , the  father  of 
Ajdtasatru,  the  contemporary  of  Buddha.  Its  foundation 
cannot,  therefore,  be  placed  later  than  560  B.  C.  according  to 
Buddhist  chronology.  In  Hwen  Thsang’s  time  (A.  D.  629 — 
642),  the  outer  walls  had  already  become  ruinous,  but  the 
inner  walls  were  still  standing,  and  occupied  a circuit  of  20  li, 
or  3^  miles.  This  statement  corresponds  tolerably  well  with  the 
measurements  of  my  survey,  which  make  the  circuit  of  the 
ramparts  somewhat  less  than  3 miles.  Buchanan  calls  new 
Bajagriha  an  irregular  pentagon  of  12,000  yards  in  diameter. 
This  is  clearly  a misprint  for  1,200  yards,  which  would  give 
a circuit  of  11,303  feet,  or  2-g-  miles  ; but  this  was  probably 
the  interior  measurement,  which,  according  to  my  survey,  is 
13,000  feet.  The  plan  of  new  Bajagriha  I make  out  to  be  an 
irregular  pentagon  of  one  long  side  and  four  nearly  equal 
sides,  the  whole  circuit  being  14,260  feet  outside  the  ditches, 
or  rather  less  than  three  miles.* 

On  the  south  side  towards  the  hills  a portion  of  the 
interior,  2,000  feet  long  and  1,500  feet  broad,  has  been  cut  off 
to  form  a citadel.  The  stone  walls  retaining  the  earthen 
ramparts  of  this  work  are  still  in  good  order  in  many  places. 

# See  Plate  XIV. 



It  is  possible  that  this  work  may  be  of  later  date,  as  suggest- 
ed by  Buchanan,  but  I am  of  opinion  that  it  Avas  simply  the 
citadel  of  the  neAv  town,  and  that  its  Avails  have  suffered  less 
from  the  effects  of  time,  oAviug  partly  to  their  having  been 
more  carefully  and  more  massively  built  than  the  less  impor- 
tant ramparts  of  the  town,  and  partly  to  their  having  been 
occasionally  repaired  as  a military  position  by  the  authori- 
ties, Avhile  the  repairs  of  the  town  Avails  were  neglected  as 
being  either  unnecessary  or  too  costly. 

The  existing  remains  at  Raj  agriha  are  not  numerous. 
The  place  has  been  occupied  at  different  times  by  Musalmans 
and  Brahmans,  by  whom  the  Buddhist  stupas  and  vihars  were 
pulled  doAvn  to  furnish  materials  for  tombs,  masjids,  and 
temples.  All  the  eminences  that  must  once  have  been 
croAvned  by  objects  of  Buddhist  Avorsliip  are  uoav  covered  with 
Muhammedan  graves ; and  all  the  Brahmanical  temples  about 
the  hot  springs  have  been  constructed  Avith  the  large  bricks  of 
Buddhist  stupas.  One  of  these  last  monuments  can  still  be 
traced  outside  the  soutli-Avest  corner  of  the  town  in  a large 
circular  hollow  mound,  which  attracted  the  notice  of  both 
Buchanan  and  Kittoe.  I examined  this  mound  carefully,  and 
I was  satisfied  that  the  IioIIoav  represented  the  original  site  of 
a stupa  from  which  the  bricks  had  been  carried  off,  while  the 
surrounding  circular  mound  represented  the  mass  of  earth  and 
broken  brick  rubbish  left  by  the  workmen.  The  excavated 
stupa  at  Sarnath,  near  Banaras,  uoav  offers  almost  exactly  the 
same  appearance.  According  to  IlAven  Thsang’s  account, 
this  circular  hollow  Avas  the  site  of  a stupa  60  feet  in  height, 
which  Avas  built  by  Asoka.  Beside  it  there  Avas  a stone  pillar 
50  feet  high,  on  which  was  inscribed  the  history  of  the  foun- 
dation of  the  stupa.  The  pillar  was  surmounted  by  an 

On  Mount  Baibliar  there  are  five  modern  Jain  temples, 
besides  the  ruins  of  an  old  Saiva  temple,  of  which  four 
granite  pillars,  10  feet  in  height,  are  still  standing,  and  50  or 
GO  smaller  pillars  are  lying  confusedly  about.  At  the  southern 
foot  of  the  mountain,  the  rock  has  a natural  scarp  for  about 
100  yards  in  length,  Avhicli,  at  the  western  end,  has  been 
smoothed  to  a height  of  19  feet,  in  front  of  which  the  rock 
has  been  cut  away  to  form  a level  terrace  90  feet  in  length  by 

* Julien's  Hweu  Tlisang,  III.,  38. 



upwards  of  30  feet  in  breadth.  Two  caves  have  been  exca- 
vated out  of  the  solid  rock  behind ; that  to  the  west,  now 
called  the  Son  Bhandar,  or  “Treasury  of  gold,”  being  34  feet 
long  by  17  feet  broad,  and  that  to  the  east  perhaps  somewhat 
less  in  length,  hut  of  the  same  breadth.  This  cave  has  either 
fallen  in  naturally  through  the  decay  of  the  rock,  or,  which 
is  more  probable,  was  blown  up  by  a zemindar  in  search  of 
treasure,  as  related  by  Major  Kittoe  of  the  other  cave. 

The  Son  Bhandar  Cave  has  one  door  and  one  window. 
Inside  there  are  no  traces  of  seats,  or  of  pedestals  of  statues, 
and  the  walls  and  roof  are  quite  bare,  excepting  where  a 
few  scarcely  legible  inscriptions  have  been  cut.  There  are 
several  short  inscriptions  on  the  jambs  of  the  doorway,  as 
well  as  on  the  outside.  In  the  principal  inscription,  which  is 
on  two  lines  outside,  the  author  speaks  of  this  cave  as  the 
“ auspicious  cave,”  evidently  alluding  to  the  fact  of  its  former 
occupation  by  Buddha  for  the  purpose  of  meditating  after  his 
noonday  meal.  This  inscription,  which  is  not  later  than  A.  D. 
200,  and  is  perhaps  earlier,  records  that  a certain  “ Muni, 
named  Taira  Deva,  of  powerful  dignity,  was  able  to  obtain 
emancipation,  having  shut  himself  up  for  spiritual  enjoyment 
in  this  auspicious  cell,  a retired  abode  of  Arhantas,  fitted  for 
an  ascetic  for  the  attainment  of  liberation.”  On  the  east 
jamb  of  the  door  also  the  same  epithet  is  applied  to  this  cave, 
as  if  it  was  a well  known  name  for  it.  This  cave  is  excavated 
in  the  south  face  of  the  hill,  where  there  is  a natural  scarp 
for  about  one  hundred  yards  in  length.  The  face  of  the  cliff 
at  the  west  end  has  been  smoothed  to  a height  of  19  feet,  in 
front  of  which  the  ground  has  been  levelled  to  form  a plat- 
form of  more  than  30  feet.  The  cave  itself  is  34  feet  long  by 
17  feet  broad  and  11^  feet  high.  To  the  east  there  has  been 
a second  cave,  about  22\  feet  long  by  17  feet  broad ; but  one 
half  of  the  roof  fell  in  long  ago,  and  the  cave  is  now  filled 
with  masses  of  rock  and  earth.  The  floor  of  this  cave  is  on  a 
lower  level  than  that  of  the  Son  Blianddr,  but  the  front  is  in 
the  same  line.  Both  caves  had  some  building  or  verandah 
in  front,  as  there  are  numerous  socket  holes  cut  in  the  rock 
above  the  door  for  the  reception  of  the  ends  of  beams.  The 
whole  length  of  level  clearing  in  front  of  the  caves  is  90  feet. 

In  the  centre  of  the  valley  between  the  five  hills,  and  in 
the  very  midst  of  the  old  city  of  Baj agriha,  there  is  a ruined 




brick  mound  19  feet  8 inches  in  height,  which  my  excava- 
tions proved  to  be  an  ancient  stupa.  A diminutive  Jain  tem- 
ple, called  Maniar  Math,  stands  on  the  top  of  the  mound. 
It  was  built  in  A.  D.  1780.  As  I expected  to  find  a solid 
brick  building,  I sank  a shaft  outside  the  Maniar  Math  with 
the  intention  of  inclining  gradually  towards  the  centre ; but 
I soon  found  that  the  core  of  the  mound  was  a mere  mass  of 
rubbish,  filling  a well  10  feet  in  diameter.  This  rubbish  was 
so  loose  that  its  removal  was  dangerous  ; but  by  propping  up 
the  portion  immediately  below  the  little  temple,  and  remov- 
ing the  bricks  cautiously,  I was  enabled  to  get  down  to  a 
depth  of  2T|  feet.  At  19  feet  I found  three  small  figures. 
One  of  them  represents  Maya  lying  on  a couch  in  the  lower 
compartment,  and  the  ascetic  Buddha  and  two  attendants 
above.  The  second  is  a naked  standing  figure,  with  a seven- 
headed snake  forming  a canopy  over  the  head.  This  is 
clearly  not  a Buddhist,  but  a Jain  sculpture.  The  third  is  so 
excessively  rude,  that  it  is  difficult  to  identify  it.  The  figure 
is  four-armed,  and  is  seated  upon  a recumbent  animal,  which 
looks  more  like  a bull  than  anything  else.  It  probably, 
therefore,  represents  Mahadeva  and  his  bull  Nandi.  As  all 
three  figures  formed  only  a part  of  the  rubbish,  it  seems  to 
me  certain  that  the  well  must  once  have  been  empty ; and 
further,  that  the  rubbish  was  most  probably  thrown  in  when 
the  little  Jain  temple  was  about  to  be  built. 

The  natives  of  the  place  call  this  well  the  Treasury,  and 
they  assert  that  it  has  never  been  opened.  On  my  arrival  I 
found  a Punjab  Sepoy,  with  a servant,  making  an  excava- 
tion on  his  own  account.  He  had  sunk  a shaft  3 feet  in 
diameter  at  7^  feet  from  the  little  temple.  The  shaft  was 
then  17  feet  deep.  I examined  the  bricks  which  had  been 
taken  out,  and  on  finding  some  with  bevelled  and  rounded 
edges,  and  others  thickly  coated  with  plaster,  I guessed  at 
once  that  the  original  structure  had  been  covered  with  an 
outer  wall,  and  that  the  shaft  had  been  sunk  just  outside  the 
original  work.  To  ascertain  whether  this  conclusion  was 
correct,  I laid  bare  the  top  of  the  mound,  and  soon  discover- 
ed that  the  well  was  surrounded  by  a wall  only  6 feet  in 
thickness.  This  would  give  the  original  stupa  a diameter  of 
22  feet.  The  Punjab  Sepoy  continued  his  shaft  down  to  the 
stone  foundation  without  finding  anything,  and  then  gave  up 
the  work. 



Haying  observed  that  the  slope  of  the  mound  on  the 
north  side  was  very  gentle,  I thought  it  probable  that  the 
building  must  have  been  approached  on  this  side  by  a flight 
of  steps.  I therefore  made  an  excavation  in  a line  due  north 
from  the  centre  of  the  mound,  and  within  a couple  of  hours 
I found  a doorway.  Continuing  the  excavation  to  the  east 
and  west,  as  well  as  to  the  north,  I found  a small  room  with 
brick  walls  and  granite  pillars  containing  two  middle-sized 
sculptured  slabs  of  middle  age.  Outside  the  doorway  a flight 
of  steps  led  downwards  towards  the  north  ; I therefore  turned 
to  the  south,  and  continued  my  excavation  until  I reached  the 
main  building.  On  examining  the  wall  I found  three  recesses, 
the  middle  one  being  roofed  by  overlapping  bricks.  On  clear- 
ing out  the  rubbish,  this  opening  proved  to  be  a carefully 
built  passage  only  2 feet  2 inches  wide,  and  3 feet  4-|  inches 
in  height,  right  through  the  outer  wall  of  the  building. 
Behind  it,  but  a few  inches  out  of  line,  there  was  a similar 
passage  through  the  original  wall,  only  2 feet  in  width.  At 
the  end  of  the  passage  I found  the  well  filled  with  the  same 
rubbish  as  on  the  south  side. 

The  discovery  of  this  passage  shows  that  the  Buddhist 
Monks  had  easy  access  to  the  interior  of  the  building.  I con- 
clude, therefore,  that  it  must  originally  have  contained  some 
relic  that  was  occasionally  shown  to  visitors,  and  to  the  public 
generally,  on  certain  fixed  days.  I cannot,  however,  discover 
in  the  accounts  of  Pa-Hian  and  Hwen  Thsang  any  mention 
of  a stupa  inside  the  walls  of  old  Raj  agriha. 

The  hot  springs  of  Rajagriha  are  found  on  both  banks  of 
the  Sarsuti  rivulet;  one-half  of  them  at  the  eastern  foot  of 
Mount  Baibhar,  and  the  other  half  at  the  western  foot  of 
Mount  Yipula.  The  former  ar  enamed  as  follows  : 1,  Ganga- 
Jumna;  2,  Anant  Rikhi;  3,  Sapt  Rikhi;  4,  Brahm-kund ; 
5,  Kasyapa  Rikhi;  6,  Bias-kund;  and  7,  Markand-kund. 
The  hottest  of  these  are  the  springs  of  the  Sapt  Rikhi.  The 
hot  springs  of  Mount  Yipula  are  named  as  follows  : 1,  Sila- 
kund;  2,  Suraj-kund;  3,  Ganes-kund;  4,  Chandrama 
kund  ; 5,  Ram-kund  ; and  6,  Sringgi-Rikhi-kund.  Ike 
last  spring  has  been  appropriated  by  the  Musalmans,  by 
whom  it  is  called  Makhdum-kund,  after  a celebrated  Saint 
named  Chilla  Shah,  whose  tomb  is  close  to  the  spring.  It  is 
said  that  Chilla  was  originally  called  Chilwa,  and  that  he  was 
an  Ahir.  He  must,  therefore,  have  been  a converted  Hindu. 




Due  north  from  Bajgir,  and  seven  miles  distant,  lies  the 
village  of  Baragaon,  which  is  quite  surrounded  by  ancient 
tanks  and  ruined  mounds,  and  which  possesses  finer  and 
more  numerous  specimens  of  sculpture  than  any  other  place 
that  I have  visited.  The  ruins  at  Baragaon  are  so  immense, 
that  Dr.  Buchanan  was  convinced  it  must  have  been  the 
usual  residence  of  the  King ; and  he  was  informed  by  a Jain 
priest  at  Bihar  that  it  was  the  residence  of  Baja  Srenika 
and  his  ancestors.  By  the  Brahmans  these  ruins  are  said  to 
be  the  ruins  of  Kundilpur,  a city  famed  as  the  birth-place  of 
Bukmini,  one  of  the  wives  of  Krishna.  But  as  Bukmini 
was  the  daughter  of  Baja  Bhishma,  of  Vidarbha,  or  Berar,  it 
seems  probable  that  the  Brahmans  have  mistaken  Berar  for 
Bihar,  which  is  only  seven  miles  distant  from  Baragaon.  I 
therefore  doubt  the  truth  of  this  Brahmanical  tradition,  more 
especially  as  I can  show  beyond  all  doubt  that  the  remains 
at  Baragaon  are  the  ruins  of  Nalanda,  the  most  famous  seat 
of  Buddhist  learning  in  all  India. 

Pa-Hian  places  the  hamlet  of  Nalo  at  one  yojan,  or  7 
miles  from  the  Hill  of  the  Isolated  Bock,  that  is,  from 
Giryek,  and  also  the  same  distance  from  new  Bajagriha.* 
This  account  agrees  exactly  with  the  position  of  Baragaon, 
with  respect  to  Giryek  and  Bajgir.  In  the  Pali  annals  of 
Ceylon  also,  Nalanda  is  stated  to  be  one  yojan  distant  from 
Bajagriha.  Again,  Hwen  Thsang  describes  Nalanda  as  being 
7 yojans,  or  49  miles,  distant  from  the  holy  Pipal  tree  at 
Buddha-Gaya,  which  is  correct  if  measured  by  the  road,  the 
direct  distance  measured  on  the  map  being  40  miles. f He 
also  describes  it  as  being  about  30  li,  or  5 miles,  to  the  north 
of  new  Bajagriha.  This  distance  and  direction  also  corres- 
pond with  the  position  of  Baragaon,  if  the  distance  be 
measured  from  the  most  northerly  point  of  the  old  ramparts. 
Lastly,  in  two  inscriptions,  which  I discovered  on  the  spot, 
the  place  itself  is  called  Nalanda.  This  evidence  seems  con- 
clusive ; but  I may  add  further  that  the  existing  ruins,  which 
I am  now  about  to  describe,  correspond  most  minutely  with 
the  descriptions  of  Hwen  Thsang. 

* Beal’s  Fa-Hian,  c.  XXVIII. 
t Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  I.,  143. 



1 . 
6 . 
A . 







Mona. n try  „f  Sakr'n4lxty». . 

3 1 uliiLh#  truptA- 
- - - - To  thuu/aXA . 

— Jiikzadtty-a 
VbyTeu . 

A\  nq  of  Cent  ■ Jbid 



Status  of  A yrUohiteewora. . 

SU/jjcl  ft  ^IVixi  U of  Bicdciha 
StUJpCK  . 


Vi  ha  t**/  of'A'Vci.iokx 

Vzfu*rw  &P 3<*z2uWycty. 

Jtatfhak,  Bhaaab . 

Viharx*  of  Tarot,  £<  tahise  twara, . 


Colossal,  Stoaxce  ofAscdie 3 uctoCha 
Tow  >noi/.rLcL  -.  2 Seated.  BatUthas 
Temple  of  TCapatycc  Deyt  . 

Dukat wet,  Mounet . 


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Lith-.  Suxv.  Genv*  Office  Gal:  June  1871 



Pa-Hian  calls  Nalanda  tlie  birth-place  of  Sariputra, 
who  was  the  right  hand  disciple  of  Buddha ; but  this  state- 
ment is  not  quite  correct,  as  we  learn,  from  the  more  detailed 
account  of  Hwen  Thsang,  that  Sariputra  was  born  at  Kcila- 
pinaka , about  half-way  between  Nalanda  and  Indra-Sila 
Guha,  or  about  4 miles  to  the  south-east  of  the  former  place. 
Nalanda  has  also  been  called  the  birth-place  of  Malm  Moga- 
lana,  who  was  the  left  hand  disciple  of  Buddha ; but  this 
is  not  quite  correct,  as  the  great  Mogalana,  according  to 
Hwen  Thsang,  was  bom  at  Kulika,  8 or  9 li,  less  than  T| 
mile,  to  the  south-west  of  Nalanda.  This  place  I was  able 
to  identify  with  a ruined  mound  near  Jagdispur,  at  lj  mile 
to  the  south-west  of  the  ruins  of  Baragaon. 

The  mound  of  Jagdispur  is  200  feet  square,  and  of 
little  height,  except  in  the  south-east  corner,  where  there  is 
a considerable  eminence,  70  feet  square.  On  the  southern 
edge  of  this  height,  there  is  a magnificent  Nira  tree,  under 
w’hich  several  statues  have  been  collected.  One  of  these  is 
the  finest  and  largest  piece  of  sculpture  that  I have  met  with. 
It  is  a figure  of  the  ascetic  Buddha,  seated  under  the  Bodhi 
tree  at  Buddha-Gaya,  and  surrounded  by  horrible  demons  and 
alluring  females,  who  are  seeking  by  different  means  to 
distract  him.  On  each  side  other  scenes  of  his  life  are  repre- 
sented, and  over  all  his  Nirvan,  or  death.  A large  drawing 
of  this  elaborate  piece  of  sculpture  is  given  by  Buchanan.* 
The  slab  is  15  feet  high  and  9-|  feet  broad ; and,  consider- 
ing the  excellence  of  the  sculpture,  the  multiplicity  of  the 
details,  and  the  fine  state  of  preservation,  this  work  is  in 
every  way  worthy  of  being  preserved  by  photography.  The 
figure  is  called  B.ukmini  by  the  ignorant  villagers,  who  daily 
smear  its  forehead  and  nose  with  red  lead,  and  pour  milk  over 
the  mouth.  The  offering  of  milk  is  considered  very  effica- 
cious ; but  the  most  acceptable  offering  is  a goat ; and  at 
the  time  of  my  visit,  the  ground  was  still  wet  with  the 
blood  of  a recently  killed  goat. 

The  remains  at  Baragaon  consist  of  numerous  masses  of 
brick  ruins,  amongst  which  the  most  conspicuous  is  a row  of 
lofty  conical  mounds  running  north  and  south.  These  high 
mounds  are  the  remains  of  gigantic  temples  attached  to  the 
famous  monastery  of  Nalanda.  The  great  monastery  itself 
can  be  readily  traced  by  the  square  patches  of  cultivation 

* Eastern  India,  I.,  Plate  XIII. 



amongst  a long  mass  of  brick  ruins  1,600  feet  by  400  feet. 
These  open  spaces  show  the  positions  of  the  court-yards  of 
the  six  smaller  monasteries  which  are  described  by  Hwen 
Thsang  as  being  situated  within  one  enclosure  forming  alto- 
gether eight  courts.  Five  of  the  six  monasteries  were  built 
by  five  consecutive  princes  of  the  same  family,  and  the  sixth 
by  their  successor,  who  is  called  King  of  Central  India.  No 
dates  are  given ; but  from  the  total  silence  of  Fa-Hian 
regarding  any  of  the  magnificent  buildings  at  N&landa, 
which  are  so  minutely  described  by  Hwen  Thsang,  I infer 
that  they  must  have  been  built  after  A.  D.  410.  Fa-Hian 
simply  states  that  he  came  to  the  hamlet  of  Nalo,  “where 
Sariputra  was  born,”  and  this  is  all  that  he  says  of  Nalanda. 
But  surely  if  the  lofty  temple  of  King  Baladitya,  which  was 
300  feet  in  height,  had  then  existed,  it  seems  scarcely  possi- 
ble that  he  should  not  have  noticed  it.  I would,  therefore, 
assign  the  probable  date  of  the  temples  and  monasteries  of 
Nalanda  to  the  two  centuries  between  the  visits  of  Fa-Hian 
and  Hwen  Thsang,  or  from  A.  D.  425  to  625.  This  date  is 
further  borne  out  by  the  fact  recorded  by  Hwen  Thsang,  that 
the  great  temple  of  Baladitya  was  similar  to  that  near  the 
sacred  Pipal  tree  at  Buddha-Gaya.  Now,  as  similarity  of 
style  may  generally  be  taken  as  denoting  proximity  of  date, 
the  erection  of  Baladitya’s  temple  at  Nalanda  may,  with 
great  probability,  be  assigned  to  the  same  century  in  which 
the  Buddha-Gaya  temple  was  built.  As  I have  already 
shown  this  to  be  about  A.  D.  500,  the  date  of  the  Nalanda 
temple  will  lie  between  A.  X).  450  and  550. 

Several  inscribed  stones  lie  scattered  over  the  ruins  of 
Bahklitya’s  monastery.  The  letters  are  only  mason’s  marks, 
but  their  forms  are  those  of  the  6th  and  7th  centuries. 

To  the  south  of  the  monastery  there  was  a tank  in 
which  the  dragon,  or  Naga  Nalanda,  was  said  to  dwell, 
and  the  place  was  named  after  him  Nalanda.  There  is  still 
existing  immediately  to  the  south  of  the  ruined  monastery 
a small  tank  called  Kargidya  JPokhar,  which  answers  exactly 
to  the  position  of  the  Nalanda  tank,  and  is,  I have  no  doubt,  the 
identical  pool  of  the  Naga. 

As  the  people  have  no  particular  names  for  the  different 
masses  of  ruin,  but  simply  call  them  collectively  “ the 
mounds,”  I will,  for  convenience  of  description,  name  each  of 



the  principal  masses  after  the  ancient  tank  on  its  western 
side.  Other  mounds  will  be  described  with  reference  to  their 
relative  positions  with  respect  to  the  principal  ruins.  In  my 
survey  of  the  ruins,  I have  also  attached  a letter  of  the 
alphabet  to  each  separate  mound.* 

Hwen  Thsang  begins  his  account  with  a vihar,  or 
temple,  just  outside  the  western  wall  of  the  monastery,  which 
had  been  erected  on  a spot  where  Buddha  had  dwelt  for 
three  months,  explaining  the  sublime  law  for  the  benefit  of 
the  gods.  This  temple  I would  identify  with  the  ruined 
mound  marked  A,  still  53  feet  in  height  and  from  65  to  70 
feet  in  thickness  near  the  top,  and  which  is  situated  imme- 
diately to  the  westward  of  the  ruined  monastery.  It  stands 
to  the  east  of  the  Punwa  tank,  and  may,  therefore,  be  called 
the  Punwa  mound.  My  excavations,  which  were  carried 
down  to  a depth  of  17  feet,  exposed  the  straight  walls  of  a 

To  the  south,  at  100  paces,  there  was  a small  stupa, 
erected  over  a spot  where  a pious  mendicant,  from  a far 
country,  had  performed  the  panclianga,  or  reverence  of  the 
five  members  (namely  head,  hands,  and  knees)  in  honour  of 
Buddha.  This  stupa  is  well  represented  by  a small 
mound  marked  B,  which  is  due  south  of  the  Punwa  mound. 

Still  further  to  the  south,  there  was  a statue  of  Avalokites- 
wara.  As  this  statue  must  have  had  some  kind  of  covering 
as  a shelter  from  the  weather,  I believe  that  it  is  repre- 
sented by  another  small  ruined  mound,  marked  C,  imme- 
diately to  the  south  of  the  last. 

To  the  south  of  the  statue  there  was  a stupa,  containing 
the  hair  and  nails  of  Buddha.  Sick  people  recovered  their 
health  by  making  the  circuit  of  this  monument.  Another 
mound,  marked  D,  to  the  east  of  the  Bahela  tank,  corres- 
ponds with  the  position  of  this  stupa  exactly,  as  it  is  due 
south  of  the  last  mound  C.  It  is  still  20  feet  high.  I made 
an  excavation  in  the  top,  which  showed  that  the  mound  had 
been  opened  previously,  as  I found  nothing  but  loose  rubbish. 
The  solid  brick-work  on  all  sides,  however,  satisfied  me  that 
it  was  the  ruin  of  an  ancient  stupa. 

* See  Plate  XVI. 



Outside  tlie  western  wall  of  tlie  monastery,  and  close  to 
a tank,  there  was  another  stupa  erected  on  the  spot  where 
Buddha  had  been  questioned  by  a heretic  on  the  subject  of 
life  and  death.  A small  mound,  marked  E,  on  the  east  bank 
of  the  Bolen  Tank,  corresponds  exactly  with  the  position  of 
this  stupa. 

At  a short  distance  to  the  east  there  was  a lofty  vihar, 
200  feet  in  height,  where  Buddha  had  explained  the  law  for 
four  months.  In  the  position  here  indicated,  there  stands 
the  highest  and  largest  of  all  the  mounds,  marked  E.  It  is 
still  60  feet  in  height,  with  a diameter  of  70  feet  at  50  feet 
above  the  ground,  and  of  80  feet  at  35  feet  above  the  ground. 
As  the  outer  edges  of  the  walls  are  much  broken,  the  original 
size  of  this  massive  building  at  the  ground  level  cannot  have 
been  much  less  than  90  feet  square.  To  ascertain  its  pro- 
bable height,  we  may  compare  it  with  the  Great  Temple  at 
Buddha-Gava,  which  has  a base  of  50  feet  square,  and  a 
height  of  160  feet.  But  as  the  copper-gilt  amalakci  fruit 
which  once  surmounted  it  no  longer  exists,  the  original 
height  cannot  have  been  less  than  170  feet.  Now,  taking 
the  same  proportions  for  the  Nalanda  temple,  we  may  deduce 
the  height  by  simple  rule-of-three,  thus  as  50  : 170 : : 90  : 306 
feet.  It  is  true  that  Hwen  Thsang  states  the  height  at  only 
200  feet,  hut  there  is  a discrepancy  in  his  statements  of  the 
height  of  another  Nalanda  temple,  which  leads  me  to  propose 
correcting  the  height  of  that  now  under  discussion  to  300 
feet.  In  speaking  of  the  Great  Temple  erected  by  Baladitya, 
Hwen  Thsang  in  one  place  makes  it  200  feet  high,  and  in 
another  place  300  feet  high.*  In  both  accounts  the  enshrined 
statue  is  said  to  he  of  Buddha  himself,  as  he  appeared  under 
the  Bodhi  tree,  and,  as  the  other  large  temple  also  contained 
a statue  of  Buddha,  it  seems  highly  probable  that  there  has 
been  some  confusion  between  the  accounts  of  the  two  temples. 

I am  quite  satisfied  that  the  lofty  mound  marked  E.  is 
the  ruin  of  a temple,  for  I discovered  three  horizontal  air 
holes,  each  in  the  form  of  a cross,  at  a height  of  35  feet  above 
the  ground.  They  measured  respectively  6,  8^,  and  11^  feet 
in  length.  The  last  measurement,  coupled  with  the  broken 
state  of  the  brick-work,  shows  that  the  walls  must  have  been 
upwards  of  12  feet  in  thickness.  In  fact,  on  the  east  side, 

* Compare  Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  I.  160,  with  III,  50. 



at  50  feet  above  the  ground,  the  broken  wall  is  still  15  feet 
thick.  Most  probably  the  walls  were  not  less  than  20  feet 
thick  at  this  height,  which  would  leave  an  interior  chamber 
-30  feet  square.  There  is  now  a great  hollow  in  the  centre  of 
this  mound,  which  I would  recommend  to  be  farther  excavat- 
ed down  to  the  ground  level,  as  I think  it  highly  probable 
that  both  statues  and  inscriptions  of  much  interest  would  be 
discovered.  Perhaps  the  colossal  statue  of  Buddha,  the  teacher 
now  standing  at  the  foot  of  mound  H.,  may  have  been 
originally  enshrined  in  this  temple.* 

In  the  north-east  corner  of  the  square  terrace  that  sur- 
rounds this  massive  ruin,  I found  the  remains  of  several  small 
stupas,  in  dark  blue  stone  of  various  sizes,  from  10  to  30  feet 
in  height.  The  ornamental  carvings  are  still  in  good  order, 
manv  of  them  beiim  very  elaborate.  Rows  after  rows  of 
Buddhas  of  all  sizes  are  the  most  favourite  decoration.  The 
solid  hemispherical  domes  are  from  1 foot  to  4 feet  in  diame- 
ter. The  basement  and  body  of  each  stupa  were  built  of 
separate  stones,  which  were  numbered  for  the  guidance  of 
the  builders,  and  cramped  together  with  iron  to  secure  greater 
durability.  No  amount  of  time,  and  not  even  an  earth- 
quake, could  have  destroyed  these  small  buildings.  Their 
solid  walls  of  iron-bound  stones  could  only  have  yielded  to 
the  destructive  fury  of  malignant  Brahmans.  I tried  to  com- 
plete a single  stupa,  but  I soon  found  that  several  pieces  were 
missing.  I believe,  however,  that  a complete  one  might  be 
obtained  by  a careful  search  about  the  village  temples,  around 
the  Jain  temple,  and  in  the  small  court-yard  opposite  Mitra- 
jit’s  house.  If  one  could  be  obtained  complete,  or  nearly  so, 
it  would  form  a most  striking  and  ornamental  addition  to  the 
Calcutta  Museum. 

* This  mound  was  subsequently  excavated  by  order  of  Government  under  the  superin- 
tendence of  Captain  Marshall.  The  temple  stood  on  a plinth  12  feet  high  above  the  ground 
level,  forming  a terrace  15  feet  wide  all  round.  The  inner  room  is  20  feet  square,  with  an  en- 
trance hall  on  the  east  side.  The  walls,  which  are  of  extreme  thickness,  are  built  of  large 
bricks  laid  in  mud.  There  are  few  remains  of  plaster,  but  the  lower  walls  appear  to  he 
sound,  but  externally  they  are  much  cracked.  The  remains  of  the  pedestal  occupy  nearly 
the  whole  west  half  of  the  inner  room,  but  there  were  no  traces  of  any  statues.  Pieces 
of  broken  statues  were,  however,  found  in  the  entrance  hall.  A portion  of  the  entrance 
is  of  more  modern  date,  the  same  as  at  Bodh-Gaya.  Captain  Marshall  closes  his  account  of 
the  explorations  with  the  following  opinion,  which  seems  to  be  well  founded  : “ The  general 
appearance  of  the  building,  viz.,  the  false  doorway,  the  abstraction  of  the  idols,  and  the 
absence  of  inside  plaster,  all  give  me  the  notion  of  the  building  having  been  made  use  of 
after  the  glories  of  the  temple  had  passed  away,  and  then  to  have  fallen  to  pieces  by  ueg- 
lect  and  consequent  decay.” 




A short  distance  to  the  north  of  the  Great  Vihar,  there 
was  another  temple  containing  a statue  of  the  Bodhisatwa 
A valokiteswara.  This  Saint  is  the  same  as  the  JPadma-pani 
of  the  Tibetans,  and  is  always  represented  with  a lotus  in  his 
hand.  An  extensive  low  mound,  marked  G.,  immediately  to 
the  north  of  the  great  mound,  corresponds  exactly  with  the 
situation  of  this  temple. 

To  the  north  of  the  last  temple  there  was  a grand  vihar, 
built  by  Baladitya,  containing  a statue  of  the  ascetic  Buddha. 
The  height,  as  I have  already  noticed,  is  differently  stated  by 
Hwen  Thsang  at  200  and  300  feet.  The  lesser  height  *1 
believe  to  be  the  correct  one,  more  especially  as  Hwen  Thsang 
mentions  that  in  its  magnificence,  its  size , and  its  statue  of 
Buddha,  it  resembled  the  Great  Temple  at  Buddha-Gaya.  As 
this  last  was  170  feet  in  height,  Baladitya’s  Vihar  might 
very  fairly  be  said  to  resemble  it  in  size,  if  it  was  200  feet 
high  ; but  if  it  was  300  feet  in  height,  there  could  have  been 
no  resemblance  whatever  in  the  dimensions  of  a temple  that 
was  nearly  twice  as  lofty.  A mound,  marked  H.,  to  the  east 
of  the  Debar  Tank,  corresponds  exactly  w ith  the  situation  of 
this  temple.  It  is  still  45  feet  in  height,  with  a breadth  of 
50  feet  at  top  from  edge  to  edge  of  brick-work.  As  the 
facing  has  disappeared  on  all  sides,  the  original  breadth,  at 
the  ground  level,  could  not  have  been  less  than  60  feet ; and 
if  the  relative  proportions  were  the  same  as  those  of  the 
Buddha-Gaya  Temple,  the  height  of  this  temple  must  have 
been  204  feet,  or  say,  in  round  numbers,  200  feet,  exactly  as 
stated  by  Hwen  Thsang.  There  is  a colossal  statue  of  the 
ascetic  Buddha  in  a small  court-yard  called  Baithak  Bhairav 
at  the  foot  of  this  mound,  which,  in  all  probability,  was  the 
original  statue  enshrined  in  Baladitya’s  Vihar. 

Dour  other  buildings  and  statues,  which  I have  been 
unable  to  identify,  are  next  mentioned  by  Hwen  Thsang,  who 
then  goes  on  to  describe  a brick  vihar  containing  a very 
lofty  copper  statue  of  Tara  Bodhisatwa.  This  was  situated  at 
2 or  3 li  to  the  north  of  the  monastery,  that  is,  between  one- 
third  and  one-half  of  a mile.  Now,  at  a distance  of  2,000 
feet  to  the  north  of  the  monastery,  and  to  the  east  of  the 
Suraj  Pokhar,  there  is  a brick  ruin  of  a very  large  temple, 
marked  N.  Prom  its  close  proximity  to  the  village,  this 
ruin  has  supplied  materials  for  all  the  existing  houses,  and  is 



consequently  of  mucli  smaller  dimensions  than  those  which 
have  been  already  described.  But  the  removal  of  the  bricks 
has  exposed  the  actual  walls  of  the  temple  in  several  places ; 
and,  by  making  a few  excavations,  I was  able  to  determine 
the  exact  dimensions  of  the  base  of  this  temple.  It  was  70-| 
feet  by  67  feet,  and  it  stood  on  a raised  terrace  6 feet  in 
height  and  125  feet  square.  If  the  relative  proportion  of 
base  to  height  was  the  same  as  that  of  the  Buddha-Gaya 
Temple,  the  height  of  this  temple  could  not  have  been  less 
than  228  or  240  feet,  according  to  which  side  of  the  base  is 
taken  for  the  calculation. 

Hwen  Thsang  also  mentions  a large  well  which  was  just 
within  the  gateway  on  the  south  side  of  the  surrounding  walls 
of  this  vihar.  Now,  there  is  a large  well,  marked  P.,  imme- 
diately on  the  south  side  of  the  ruined  mound  above  describ- 
ed, which  must  he  the  very  one  noticed  by  Hwen  Thsang  as 
having  owed  its  origin  to  Buddha  himself. 

There  are  many  other  objects  worthy  of  notice  at  Bara- 
gaon,  which  I can  only  briefly  enumerate  : 1st,  The  sculptures 
collected  in  the  enclosure  at  Baithak  Bhairav,  marked  M. 
2nd,  The  colossal  figure  of  the  ascetic  Buddha  at  S.  This 
statue  is  remarkable  for  having  the  names  of  the  attendant 
figures  inscribed  over  their  heads.  Thus  we  have  Ary  a 
Sdriputra  and  Ary  a Maudgalayana  inscribed  over  two  flying 
figures  carrying  garlands  ; and  Ary  a Mitreyandtha  and  Ary  a 
Vasumitra  over  two  attendant  standing  figures.  An  inscrip- 
tion in  two  lines  on  the  hack  rail  of  the  seat  gives  the  usual 
Buddhist  formula,  and  adds  that  the  statue  was  “ the  pious 
gift;  of  Ganggakd  (a  lady  who  had  attained  the  religious 
rank  of  paramopasika.)  This  statue  is  well  worthy  of 
being  photographed.  3rd,  A small  temple,  marked  T., 
with  a figure  of  the  three-headed  goddess  Vajra-Vardhi. 
The  Buddhist  formula  is  inscribed  on  this  figure,  which  is 
evidently  one  of  those  mistaken  by  Major  Kittoe  for  Durga 
slaying  the  buffalo  demon  Maheshasur.  The  goddess  has  one 
porcine  head,  and  there  are  seven  hogs  represented  on  the 
pedestal.  4th,  A life-size  ascetic  Buddha  in  the  village  of 
Baragaon,  and  a number  of  smaller  figures  at  an  adjacent 
Hindu  temple,  and  also  at  the  house  of  Mitrajit  Zamindar. 
5th,  Two  low  mounds  to  the  north  of  the  village  marked  V., 
one  having  a four-armed  image  of  Vishnu  on  Garud,  and  t_he 


other  having  two  figures  of  Buddha  seated  on  chairs.  The 
former  must  clearly  have  belonged  to  a Bralimanical  temple. 
6tli,  Three  statues  at  W.,  near  the  Tar  Sing  Tank,  of  which 
two  are  females  and  one  a male  figure  seated  with  hands  on 
knees.  7th,  The  small  temple  in  the  hamlet  of  Kapatiya, 
marked  X.,  where  there  are  several  interesting  figures  col- 
lected. Amongst  them  there  is  a fine  Vajra  Yaralii,  and 
a very  good  Vagiswari,  with  an  important  inscription  in 
two  lines,  which  gives  the  name  of  the  place  Xalanda,  and  is 
dated  in  the  year  1 of  the  reign  of  the  paramount  sovereign 
Sri  Gopala  Deva.*  8th,  A large  mound  at  Y.,  which  looked 
like  a ruined  stupa.  I sank  a shaft  20  feet  deep  in  the  centre 
of  the  mound,  and  found  that  it  was  filled  with  rubbish.  If, 
therefore,  it  was  a stupa,  it  had  been  opened  long  before ; 
but  I am  inclined  to  believe  that  it  was  a temple,  as  a large 
stone  was  found  in  the  excavation  at  a depth  of  13  feet. 
9th,  A Jain  temple  at  Z.,  which  is  only  remarkable  as  being 
of  the  same  style  of  architecture  as  the  Great  Temple  at 
Buddha-Gaya.  It  is  probably  of  about  the  same  age,  or 
A.  D.  500.  Its  present  height  is  only  36  feet  without  the 
pinnacle,  which  is  modern.  The  whole  is  wdiite- washed. 
Inside  the  temple  there  are  several  Jain  figures,  of  which 
that  of  Mahdvir  bears  the  date  of  Samvat  1501,  or  A.  D. 
1447.  10th,  On  the  banks  of  the  Suraj-kund  many  interest- 

ing figures  are  collected.  They  are  chiefly  Buddhist,  but 
there  are  also  some  figures  of  Vishnu  four-armed,  of  the 
Varaha  Avatar,  of  Siva  and  Parvati,  and  also  of  Surya 

I cannot  close  this  account  of  the  ancient  Nalanda  with- 
out mentioning  the  noble  tanks  which  surround  the  ruins  on 
all  sides.  To  the  north-east  are  the  Gidi  Pokhar  and  the 
Pansokar  Pokhar,  each  nearly  a mile  in  length  ; while  to  the 
south  there  is  the  Indra  Pokhar,  which  is  nearly  half  a mile 
in  length.  The  remaining  tanks  are  much  smaller  in  size,  and 
do  not  require  any  special  notice. 


The  old  city  of  Bihar  lies  7 miles  to  the  north-east  of 
Baragaon.  In  our  maps  the  name  is  spelt  Beliar,  but  by  the 
people  it  is  written  Bihar,  which  is  sufficient  to  show  that  it 

'*  See  Hate  XIII.  for  a copv  of  tills  inscription. 


Plate  XVII. 





v ^ ^ i 

3 fr  Left  , 

K 'f^\Q ,-w^f^l.,. 

i ascription 











, ^ - 

A.  Cunningham  del.  Fhotozmcographea  f.t  the  Surveyor  Ununl's  Office  Calcutta. 


thin  piece  split  off 



must  once  have  been  the  site  of  some  famous  Buddhist  Vihar. 
But  the  only  existing  Buddhist  remains  that  I could  find 
were  votive  stupas  and  fragments  of  figures.  One  of  the  last 
was  inscribed  with  characters  of  about  A.  I).  900,  but  the 
inscription  is  unfortunately  only  a fragment. 

The  city  of  Bihar  consists  principally  of  one  long  nar- 
row street,  paved  with  rough  stones.  There  are  two  bridges 
with  pointed  arches  over  some  irrigation  canals,  the  remains 
of  former  prosperity ; but  the  whole  place  is  now  dirty  and 
decayed.  In  all  directions  are  seen  Musalman  tombs ; the 
smaller  ones  of  "brick,  the  larger  ones  of  squared  and  carved 
stones  from  the  usual  Muhammadan  quarries  of  ruined 
Buddhist  or  Brahmanical  buildings.  To  the  north-west  of 
the  city  there  is  a long  isolated  hill,  having  a precipitously 
steep  cliff  on  its  northern  face,  and  ou  the  southern  face  an 
easy  slope  in  successive  ledges  of  rock.  The  hill  is  now 
crowned  by  some  Musalman  buildings,  of  which  the  largest 
is  said  to  be  the  tomb  of  Malik  Baja,  but  I believe  that  it  is 
the  tomb  of  one  Ibrahim  in  the  reign  of  Biruz,  as  I read 
both  of  these  names  in  one  of  the  inscriptions.  To  the 
north-east  of  these  tombs  and  distant  1,000  feet,  on  the 
highest  point  of  the  hill,  there  is  a square  platform  of  brick, 
which  must  once  have  been  the  basement  of  a building, 
perhaps  of  a stupa,  while  the  more  genial  site  of  the  Durgah, 
where  fine  trees  are  now  growing,  might  once  have  held  a 
Buddhist  Vihar  and  its  attendant  monastery. 

One  mile  due  east  from  the  Durgah,  and  about  100  yards 
inside  the  northern  gate  of  the  old  fort  of  Bibar,  there  lies  a 
sand-stone  pillar  which  hears  two  separate  inscriptions  of  the 
Gupta  Dynasty.  Unfortunately,  the  surface  of  the  stone 
has  peeled  off  considerably,  so  that  both  of  the  inscriptions 
are  incomplete.  The  upper  inscription,  which  is  of  Kumara 
Gupta,  has  lost  both  ends  of  every  line,  being  probably  about 
one-tbird  of  the  whole.  The  lower  inscription  has  lost  only 
the  left  upper  corner,  and  some  unknown  amount  at  the 
bottom,  where  the  pillar  is  broken  off.  But  as  the  remaining 
portion  of  the  upper  part  is  letter  for  letter  the  same  as  the 
opening  of  the  Bhitari  pillar  inscription,  nearly  the  whole  of 
the  missing  part  of  the  left  upper  corner  can  be  restored  at 



once.*  This  record  apparently  belongs  to  Skanda  Gupta, 
the  son  and  successor  of  Kurnara  Gupta,  as  the  genealogy 
is  continued  beyond  Kurnara  in  the  same  words  as  in  the 
Bhitari  inscription. 

Outside  the  northern  gate  of  the  old  fort,  there  are  some 
tombs  that  are  said  to  belong  to  Christians,  as  they  lie  east 
and  west,  whilst  all  Musalman  tombs  lie  north  and  south. 
One  of  them  bears  an  inscription  surmounted  by  a cross, 
which  proves  it  to  be  a Christian  tomb.  The  inscription  I 
believe  to  be  in  the  Armenian  character,  but  though  it  does 
not  appear  to  be  old,  probably  not  more  than  fifty  or  a hun- 
dred years,  yet  I could  not  obtain  any  information  regarding 
the  tombs. 

The  cyclopean  walls  of  the  old  fort  are  very  curious ; 
but  as  the  fort  has  been  fully  described  by  Buchanan,  it  is 
unnecessary  for  me  to  do  more  than  make  this  mention  of  it. 


A Buddliistical  inscription  from  Ghosrawa,  a village  to 
the  S.  S.  W.  of  Bihar,  distant  7 miles,  was  first  discovered 
by  Major  Kittoe,  who  published  a translation  of  it  made  by 
Dr.  Ballantyne.  This  inscription  is  a very  important  one  for 
the  illustration  of  the  later  history  of  Buddhism,  as  it  men- 
tions the  existence,  somewhere  about  the  8th  or  9th  century, 
of  several  of  the  most  famous  places  of  the  Buddhists.  Dor 
instance,  it  mentions,  1st,  the  Kanishka  Monastery  in  the 
city  of  Nagarahara,  close  to  Jelalabad  in  the  Kabul  Valley; 
2nd,  the  Vajrdsan,  or  Diamond  throne  of  Buddha,  at  Buddha- 
Gaya;  3rd,  the  Indra-Sila  peak,  which  I have  already  iden- 
tified with  Giryek ; 4th,  the  Vihar  in  Nalanda,  the  city  of 
Yaso  Varmma.  This  part  of  the  translation,  however,  requires 
revision,  as  the  name  of  Kalanda,  which  occurs  twice,  has 
in  both  instances  been  rendered  as  if  it  was  merely  a term 
for  some  ascetic  posture,  instead  of  the  proper  name  of  the 

* See  Plate  XVII.  for  the  Bihar  Pillar  inscriptions,  and  Plate  XXVII.  for  the  Bhitari 
Pillar  inscription.  Babu  Bajendralal  Mitra,  in  the  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal  1866,  p. 
271,  denies  the  accuracy  of  my  statement.  He  says  “ General  Cunningham  imagines  it 
to  be  a counterpart  of  the  Bhitari  record” — I imagine  nothing  of  the  kind.  My  remarks  refer 
to  the  upper  part  of  the  inscription  alone,  and  this  I again  assert  to  be  “ letter  for  lettfer 
the  same  as  the  opening  of  the  Bhitari  Pillar  inscription.”  The  Babu  says  that  “ no  specific 
name  is  legible.”  I refer  him  to  his  own  Nagari  transcript  of  line  4,  where  he  reads  kecha- 
potrasya.  This  should  be  Jcacha,  for  Gliatot-kacha,  the  predecessor  of  Chandra  Gupta,  whose 
wife  Kurnari  Devi  is  mentioned  in  the  next  line. 



town  which  contained  the  most  famous  monastery  in  all 
India.  I will  submit  this  inscription  for  re-translation. 

The  other  remains  at  Gliosrawa  are  few  and  unim- 
portant. There  is  a mound  of  brick  ruin  touching  the 
village,  and  a small  temple  on  a low  mound  with  some 
broken  figures  between  Gliosrawa  and  the  small  village  of 
Asanagar.  The  inscription  obtained  by  Major  Kittoe  is 
now  fixed  in  the  wall  of  this  temple.  At  the  western  foot 
of  the  Ghosrawa  mound  there  is  a four-armed  standing  male 
statue  of  life  size,  inscribed  with  the  usual  formula  of  the 
Buddhist  faith.  In  the  upper  right  hand  there  is  a necklace, 
but  the  lower  hand  is  open,  the  upper  left  hand  holds  a lotus, 
and  the  lower  hand  a bell.  There  is  a small  figure  of  Buddha 
in  the  head  dress  of  the  statue,  from  which  I believe  that 
this  figure  represents  Avalokiteswara,  as  Hwen  Tlisang  des- 
cribes a similar  statue  at  the  Kapotika  Sangharama.  The 
characters  of  the  inscription  do  not  seem  to  me  to  be  later 
than  A.  D.  800. 

On  the  top  of  the  mound  I found  the  lower  portion  of 
a female  figure,  of  which  the  upper  part  was  fixed  in  the 
ground  near  the  Asanagar  Temple.  The  statue  is  two-armed, 
and  holds  a lotus  in  one  hand.  It  probably  represents 
Dharmma.  There  are  two  four-armed  female  attendants, 
that  to  the  left  carrying  a human  head. 


At  Titarawa,  2 miles  to  the  north  of  Ghosrawa,  there 
is  a fine  large  tank  1,200  feet  in  length,  with  a considerable 
mound  of  brick  ruin  to  the  north,  and  a colossal  statue  of 
the  ascetic  Buddha  to  the  south,  which  is  now  called  Bhairav. 
The  pedestal  is  7 feet  broad,  and  the  whole  figure  is  still  9 feet 
high,  although  the  upper  portion  is  wanting.  The  usual 
Buddhist  formula  is  inscribed  on  the  lotus  leaves  of  the 
pedestal.  There  are  besides  several  others  small  and  unim- 
portant, one  of  which  bears  the  Buddhist  formula,  and  another 
inscription  in  three  lines  of  small  letters.  The  greater 
portion  of  this  inscription  is  injured,  but  sufficient  remains 
to  declare  the  date  of  the  statue,  which  I believe  to  be  about 
A.  D.  800 ; I can  read  the  name  of  Maliapala  at  the  end 
of  it.  On  the  west  side  of  the  statue  there  is  the  foundation 
of  a brick  stupa,  18  feet  in  diameter. 



The  mound  of  Titarawa  is  about  20  feet  high,  and  has 
a small  modem  fort  on  the  top,  with  a round  tower  at  each 
of  the  angles.  Excavations  for  bricks  are  still  going  on,  as 
at  the  period  of  Major  Kittoe’s  visit.  I traced  the  remains 
of  several  walls,  from  wdiich  I infer  that  the  mound  was  the 
site  of  a large  monastery.  There  is  no  mention  of  this  place 
either  in  Ea-Hian  or  Hwen  Tlisang. 


Eive  miles  to  the  east  of  Ghosrawa,  and  on  the  eastern 
hank  of  the  Sakri  River,  there  is  a low  hill  covered  with 
brick  ruins,  close  to  a village  called  Aplisar.  The  long  and 
important  inscription  of  a second  dynasty  of  Guptas,  that 
was  discovered  at  this  place  by  Major  Kittoe,  is  no  longer  to 
be  found  at  Aphsar.  The  people  are  unanimous  in  stating 
that  Major  Kittoe  removed  it  to  Nowada  for  the  purpose  of 
copying  it ; and  he  himself  states  that  he  “ brought  it  away 
to  re-examine  it,  and  to  restore  it  as  much  as  possible  before 
having  it  fixed  in  a pedestal  near  the  Varaha”  in  Aphsar. 
I enquired  for  this  inscription  at  Nowada,  at  Gaya,  and  at 
Banaras,  but  could  not  hear  any  thing  of  it.  The  loss  of 
this  important  inscription  is  very  much  to  be  regretted ; 
but  luckily  I possess  a transcript  of  it  in  modern  Nagari, 
which  Major  Kittoe  himself  gave  me  in  1850.  This  has 
been  submitted  to  Babu  Rnjendralal  Mitra  for  translation.* 


At  16  miles  to  the  north  of  Gaya,  or  19  miles  by  the 
road,  there  are  several  groups  of  granite  hills,  called  Kctmca- 
Dol,  Bardtbar,  Ndgdrjuni,  and  Dhardwat. f All  of  these 
possess  some  Buddhistic  remains,  but  the  most  interesting 
are  the  caves  of  Bardbar  and  JSdgarjuni,  which  were  hewn 
out  of  the  solid  rock  upwards  of  two  thousand  years  ago. 

Kauwa-JDol  is  a detached  hill  nearly  one  mile  to  the 
south-west  of  the  main  group  of  hills,  and  just  six  miles 

* The  Babu’s  translation  will  be  found  in  the  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal  for  1866, 
p.  272.  The  inscription  gives  the  genealogy  of  a dynasty  of  nine  Gupta  Kings.  There  is  ap- 
parently nothing  to  guide  us  in  fixing  the  date,  and,  in  the  absence  of  the  original  document, 
I can  only  conjecture  that  these  Guptas  are  of  later  date  than  the  well-known  Gupta  dynasty 
of  the  Allahabad  and  Bhitari  Pillar  inscriptions.  I possess  gold  coins  of  three  later 
Princes,  Vishnu,  Kumara,  and  Jaya,  who  probably  belonged  to  the  family  of  the  Aphsar 

f See  Plate  XVIII. 


Hatty  XV HI . 


A Gmrml&giiam.  cL(*\ 

Litho.  at  the  Survr.  Genl’s  Office  Ca!.  October  1371 

Sketch.  "Sfstp 

sho-wmgthe  Civei  audjtniis 
m th» 

BAKABAH  hills 


Bara  bar— m. 

A.  Kama  Chopar  Cave. 

B.  Sudama  Cave. 

C.  Lomas  Bishi  Cave. 

JO.  Vistoa  Cave. 


E.  Nagarjuni  Cave , or  Gopiya. 
E.  Vapiya  Cave,  and  well. 

G.  Vadu (hi  Cave. 





to  tlie  east-nortli -east  of  the  Bela  Dak  Bungalow.  This 
hill  is  quite  inaccessible,  as  it  is  formed  entirely  of  huge 
masses  of  granite  piled  precipitously  above  one  another, 
and  crowned  with  a single  lofty  block  that  frowns  grandly 
over  the  plains  below.  It  is  said  that  this  pinnacle  was 
formerly  topped  by  another  block,  which  was  so  nicely 
balanced  that  it  used  to  rock  even  when  a crow  alighted 
upon  it.  Brom  this  belief  the  hill  acquired  the  name  of 
Kauwa-Dol , or  the  “ crow’s  swing,”  or  “ rocking-stone.” 

At  the  northern  foot  of  the  Kauwa-Dol  there  has 
formerly  been  a temple  of  hewn  granite.  A large  village 
must  also  once  have  existed  on  the  north  and  east  sides  of 
the  hill,  as  the  foot  of  the  hill,  which  is  considerably  raised 
above  the  fields,  is  strewn  with  broken  bricks,  hewn  stones, 
and  fragments  of  pottery.  There  are  several  Muhammedan 
tombs  on  this  mound,  built  chiefly  of  pillars  and  other 
squared  and  ornamented  stones  of  some  Hindu  temple. 
The  name  of  this  old  place  is  said  to  have  been  Samanpur. 
Major  Kittoe,  however,  was  told  that  this  name  applied  only 
to  the  northern  portion  of  the  ruins,  the  eastern  portion 
being  called  Sarain. 

On  the  rocks  of  the  northern  face  of  the  hill,  nume- 
rous rude  figures  have  been  sculptured.  One  of  these  is  a 
figure  of  Ganes,  2-|  feet  high,  beside  a lingam.  Several  of 
them  represent  Gcmri  SanJcar  or  Hara  Gauri ; but  the  most 
common  of  these  sculptures  is  the  favourite  figure  of  the 
four-armed  Durga  slaying  the  Mahesctsur,  or  Buffalo  Demon. 
In  her  two  right  hands  she  holds  a sword  and  a trident,  and 
in  her  upper  left  hand  a shield,  while  her  lower  left  hand 
grasps  the  tail  of  the  Buffalo.  All  of  these  are  Brahmanical 
figures ; but  there  are  also  rude  figures  of  Buddha  seated, 
and  one  female  figure  which  is  said  to  be  Paclmavati,  or 
Mayd  Devi,  but  which  is  most  probably  only  a representation 
of  Dharmma.  In  a recess  on  the  east  side  of  the  hill,  and 
amidst  the  ruins  of  a large  temple,  of  which  several  pillars 
are  still  standing,  there  is  a colossal  figure  of  Buddha  the 
ascetic,  as  he  appeared  when  seated  in  mental  abstraction 
under  the  Bodhi  tree  at  Buddha-Gaya.  A drawing  of  this 
figure  has  been  given  in  Buchanan  Hamilton’s  Eastern 
India.*  It  is  the  largest  statue  that  I have  seen,  the  figure 

* Vol.  I.,  Plate  XIV.,  Fig.  5. 




alone  being  8 feet  high,  with  a breadth  across  the  shoulders 
of  four  feet,  and  of  sis  feet  across  the  knees.  But  the  great 
statue  in  the  temple  of  Buddha-Gaya,  which  was  seen  and 
described  by  Hwen  Thsang,  was  somewhat  more  than  one- 
third  larger,  its  dimensions  being  11  feet  5 inches  in 
height,  8 feet  8 inches  in  breadth  across  the  knees,  and  6 
feet  6 inches  across  the  shoulders. 

In  the  Barahar  group  of  hills  there  are  several  distinct 
peaks,  of  which  the  most  conspicuous  are  the  Murali  Peak 
to  the  north,  and  the  Sanda  Giri  on  the  south,  both  of  which 
join  the  Barahar  or  Siddhesivara  Peak  on  the  east.  On  the 
summit  of  the  Barahar  Peak  there  is  a small  Hindu  temple 
dedicated  to  Mahadeva,  which  contains  a lingam  called 
Siddheswara,  and  which,  from  an  inscription  in  one  of  the 
caves  mentioning  this  name,  we  know  to  he  at  least  as  old  as 
the  6th  or  7th  century.  Immediately  to  the  south  of  the 
Barahar  Peak  there  lies  a small  valley,  or  hasin,  nearly  square 
in  shape,  and  entirely  surrounded  by  hills,  except  at  two  points 
on  the  north-east  and  south-east,  where  walls  have  been  built 
to  complete  the  enclosure.  Its  greatest  length,  measured 
diagonally  from  peak  to  peak,  is  just  half  a mile,  hut  the 
actual  basin  is  not  more  than  400  yards  in  length  by  250 
yards  in  breadth.* 

Towards  the  southern  corner  of  the  basin,  there  are  two 
small  sheets  of  clear  water,  which  find  an  outlet  under  ground 
to  the  south-east  and  re-appear  in  the  sacred  spring  called 
Fatal  Ganna,  where  an  annual  assembly  is  held  in  the  month 
of  Bliddrapada  for  the  purpose  of  bathing.  On  this  side  is 
the  principal  entrance  to  the  valley,  which  lies  over  large 
rounded  masses  of  granite,  now  worn  smooth  and  slippery  by 
the  feet  of  numerous  pilgrims.  I ascended  by  this  path  with- 
out any  difficulty,  after  having  taken  off  my  shoes,  but  in 
descending  I found  a shorter  and  quicker  way  down  the  mass 
of  loose  rough  stones  at  the  foot  of  the  enclosure  wall  on  the 
same  side.  These  stones  are  the  ruins  of  buildings  which 
once  crowned  the  wall  on  this  side. 

Immediately  to  the  south  of  the  water,  and  in  the  south- 
ern angle  of  the  valley,  there  is  a low  ridge  of  granite  rock 
lying  from  west  to  east,  about  500  feet  long,  from  100  to  120 

* See  Plate  XVIII. 



feet  thick,  and  from  30  to  35  feet  in  height.  The  top  of  the 
ridge  is  rounded,  and  falls  rapidly  towards  the  east.  It  is 
divided  longitudinally  by  natural  cleavage  into  three  separate 
masses.  The  block  towards  the  north  is  much  the  smallest, 
being  not  more  than  50  feet  long  by  27  feet  in  thickness. 
Originally  it  was  probably  about  80  or  100  feet  in  length,  but 
its  eastern  end  has  been  cut  away  to  obtain  access  to  the  face 
of  the  central  mass  of  rock,  in  which  the  Karna-Choipdr 
Cave  has  been  excavated.  A lingam  and  two  rude  Brahrna- 
nical  figures  are  sculptured  on  the  end  of  the  northern  rock. 
The  middle  rock  is  between  200  and  300  feet  in  length, 
with  a perpendicular  face  towards  the  north.  The 
largest  mass  of  rock  which  faces  towards  the  south 
is  rounded  at  top,  but  the  lower  part  has  been  scarped 
to  form  a perpendicular  wall  for  the  two  large  caves  now 
called  Sudama  and  Lomas  Bishi.  A level  piece  of  ground, 
about  100  feet  in  width,  intervenes  between  this  great  rock 
and  the  foot  of  the  southern  hill.  Sheds  and  temporary  build- 
ings are  erected  on  this  spot  during  the  annual  fair  time, 
when  the  caves  are  visited  by  thousands  of  pilgrims.  The 
ground  is  strewn  with  broken  bricks  and  fragments  of  pottery, 
and  the  rubbish  has  now  accumulated  to  a height  of  three  feet 
above  the  floors  of  the  caves.  This  will  account  for  the  fact 
of  there  having  been  one  foot  of  water  in  this  cave  when 
visited  by  Buchanan.  The  water  was  drained  away  by  Major 
Kittoe,  who  dug  a trench  along  the  foot  of  the  rock,  and 
brought  to  light  several  pieces  of  stone  pillars  wrhich  pro- 
bably belonged  to  some  portico  or  cloister  in  front  of  the 

The  Barabar  Basin  is  naturally  a strong  defensive 
position,  as  it  possesses  plenty  of  water,  and  is  only 
accessible  at  two  points,  on  the  north-east  and  south-east. 
Now,  both  of  these  points  have  been  closed  by  walls, 
and  as  there  are  also  traces  of  walls  on  the  surrounding 
hills,  and  more  particularly  on  the  Siddheswara  Hill,  it 
seems  certain  that  the  place  must  once  have  been  used  as 
a stronghold.  There  is  indeed  a tradition  of  some  Baja 
having  been  besieged  in  this  place,  and  that  he  escaped  by 
the  narrow  passage  over  the  Siddheswara  Hill.  Its  very 
name  of  Barabar,  that  is,  bara  and  awara,  or  Barawara , the 
“ great  enclosure,”  points  to  the  same  conclusion,  although 
this  may  have  been  originally  applied  to  the  much  larger 



enclosure  between  tbe  Barabar  and  Nagarjuni  Hills,  and  the 
western  branch  of  the  Phalgu  Biver,  where,  according  to 
Buchanan’s  information,  the  original  Bam  Gaya  was  situated. 
The  numerous  heaps  of  brick  and  stone  that  lie  scattered  over 
the  plain  would  seem  to  show  that  this  had  once  been  the 
site  of  a large  town.  The  situation  is  similar  to  that  of  old 
Baja-griha,  namely,  that  of  a small  valley  or  basin  almost 
surrounded  by  hills ; but  in  size  it  is  very  much  less  than 
the  famous  Girivraja , or  hill-encircled  city  of  Jarasandha. 
This  enclosure  had  the  Barabar  Hill  on  the  west,  the  San  gar 
branch  of  the  Phalgu  River  on  the  east,  and  the  two  parallel 
ridges  of  the  Nagarjuni  Hills  to  the  north  and  south.  It  was 
upwards  of  one  mile  in  length,  with  a mean  width  of  half  a 
mile  and  a circuit  of  rather  more  than  three  miles.  The 
circuit  of  the  hills  surrounding  old  Baja-griha  was  about 
eight  miles. 

The  caves  in  the  Barabar  Hills  are  usually  known  as  the 
Sat-ghara,  or  “ seven  houses.”  Major  Kittoe  proposed  Sapt- 
garbha , or  the  “ seven  caves”  as  the  true  name ; but  I think 
that  Sapta-griha,  or,  as  it  is  pronounced  in  the  vernacular  of 
the  present  day,  Sat-ghara , is  a preferable  etymology,  as  it 
is  the  very  same  name  by  which  this  collection  of  caves  is 
now  known. 

The  Nagarjuni  Hills  consist  of  two  very  narrow  ridges 
of  granite  running  nearly  parallel,  and  about  half  a mile 
distant  from  each  other,  between  the  Barabar  Peak  and  the 
Phalgu  Biver.  The  northern  ridge  would  appear  to  be  the 
same  as  that  which  Buchanan  calls  Murali ,*  but  my  inform- 
ants applied  this  name  to  another  peak  in  the  Barabar  group. 
The  southern  ridge  contains  the  famous  old  caves,  of  which  the 
largest  one,  called  the  Gopi  Cave,  is  on  the  southern  side,  with 
its  entrance  to  the  south.  The  two  other  caves  are  situated 
on  the  southern  face  of  a small  spur,  or  off-shoot,  on  the  nor- 
thern side  of  the  hill. 

There  are,  therefore,  altogether  seven  caves  in  these  hills> 
four  of  which  belong  to  the  Barabar  or  Siddheswara  group, 
and  three  to  the  JSldgarjuni  group.  I incline,  therefore,  to 
believe  that  the  name  of  Sat-ghara,  or  the  “ seven  houses,” 
belonged  originally  to  the  whole  of  these  seven  caves,  and  not 

* Eastern  India,  Vol.  I.,  p.  100. 

B A R A B A R 

Plate  XIX 



A.  Cunrung-lrutm.  del 

■LitV  S nrv-  uen1 3 Ol'iHcc  Gal-  June  1871 



to  the  four  caves  with  seven  chambers  in  the  Barabar  group. 
It  is  true,  indeed,  that  the  Barabar  caves  are  somewhat  older 
than  those  of  Nagarjuni,  hut  the  difference  of  date  is  very 
little,  being  not  more  than  30  years,  as  will  be  shown  when  I 
come  to  speak  of  the  inscriptions. 

The  Kama  Chop  dr  Cave,  marked  A.  in  the  map,  is 
situated  in  the  northern  face  of  the  Barabar  ridge  of  granite, 
which  has  already  been  described.  The  entrance,  which  is  of 
Egyptian  form,  faces  the  north.  The  cave  is  33  feet  Ga- 
niches in  length,  by  14  feet  in  width.*  The  sides  of  the 
cave  are  6 feet  inch  in  height,  and  the  vaulted  roof  has  a 
rise  of  4 feet  8 inches,  making  the  total  height  10  feet  9 
inches.  At  the  western  end  there  is  a raised  platform  7 feet 
G inches  long,  2 feet  6 inches  broad,  and  1 foot  3 inches  high. 
Erom  its  length  I infer  that  this  was  the  pedestal  of  a statue. 
The  whole  of  the  interior  of  the  cave  is  polished.  On  the 
outside,  and  at  the  western  corner  of  the  entrance,  there  is  a 
sunken  tablet  containing  a short  inscription  of  five  lines  in 
the  ancient  character  of  Asoka’s  Pillars.  It  records  the  ex- 
cavation of  the  cave  in  the  19th  year  of  the  reign  of  Ilaja 
JPiyadasi,  that  is,  of  Asoka  himself,  f This  cave,  therefore, 
dates  as  far  back  as  245  B.  C.  The  inscription  has  been  so 
much  injured  by  the  weather,  that  it  is  very  difficult  to  make 
out  the  letters  satisfactorily.  It  also  faces  the  north,  so  that 
no  advantage  can  be  obtained  from  the  difference  of  light 
and  shade  which  is  caused  by  the  sun  in  the  hollows  of  the 
letters  of  such  inscriptions  as  face  in  other  directions.  There 
are  also  several  short  inscriptions  on  the  jambs  of  the  door- 
way, such  as  Bodhimula  “the  root  of  Intelligence,”  Daridra, 
kdntdra  “ the  cave  of  the  poor,”  or  “ the  mendicant’s  cave,” 
and  others  the  records  of  mere  visitors. 

The  Sudama  Cave,  marked  B.  in  the  map,  is  situated  in 
the  same  granite  range,  but  on  the  opposite  side  of  it,  and 
with  its  entrance  facing  the  south.  The  door-way,  which 
is  of  Egyptian  form,  is  sunk  in  a recess  6^  feet  square 
and  2 feet  deep.  On  the  eastern  wall  of  this  recess  or 
porch,  there  is  an  inscription  of  two  lines  in  the  ancient  Pali 
characters  of  Asoka’s  Pillars.  An  attempt  has  been  made  to 
obliterate  the  greater  part  of  this  inscription  with  a chisel, 

* See  Plate  XIX  , Fig.  1,  for  plan  and  section, 
t See  Plate  XX.,  No.  1 Inscription. 



but  owing  to  the  great  depth  of  the  letters  the  work  of  des- 
truction was  not  an  easy  one,  and  the  clearly  cut  lines  of  the 
original  letters,  wTith  the  exception  of  one,  perhaps,  at  the 
end,  are  still  distinctly  traceable  in  the  midst  of  the  rough 
holes  made  by  the  destroyer’s  chisel.  This  inscription  re- 
cords the  dedication  by  Raja  Piyadasi  (that  is,  Asoka  him- 
self), in  the  12th  year  of  his  reign,  of  the  Nigoha  cave.* 
The  excavation  of  this  cave,  therefore,  dates  as  far  back  as 
252  B.  C.,  the  very  same  year  in  which  many  of  Asoka’s 
edicts  were  promulgated,  as  recorded  in  his  different  inscrip- 
tions both  on  pillars  and  rocks.  The  cave  itself  consists  of 
two  chambers,  of  which  the  inner  one  is  nearly  circular  with 
a hemispherical  domed  roof.  This  roof,  which  projects 
beyond  the  wall  of  the  circular  room  into  the  outer  apart- 
ment, is  considerably  under-cut,  as  if  to  represent  a thatch 
with  its  overhanging  caves.  The  circular  room  is  19  feet  11 
inches  in  diameter  from  west  to  east,  and  19  feet  from  north 
to  south.  The  outer  apartment  is  32  feet  9 inches  in  length, 
by  19  feet  6 inches  in  breadth.  The  walls  are  6 feet  9 inches 
in  height  to  the  springing  of  the  vaulted  roof,  which  has  a 
rise  of  5 feet  6 inches,  making  the  total  height  of  the  cham- 
ber 12  feet  3 inches.  At  the  east  end  of  this  apartment 
there  is  a shallow  recess  which  may  have  been  intended  as  a 
niche  for  a statue,  or  more  probably  as  an  entrance  to  another 
projected  chamber.  But  the  work  was  abandoned  soon  after 
its  commencement,  and  remains  rough  and  unfinished, 
while  all  the  rest  of  the  cave,  both  roof  and  walls,  is  highly 

The  Lomas  JRishi  Cave,  marked  C.  in  the  map,  is  similar 
to  the  Sudama  Cave,  both  as  to  the  size  and  arrangement  of 
its  two  chambers  ; but  the  whole  of  the  interior  of  the 
circular  room  has  been  left  rough,  and  both  the  floor  and  the 
roof  of  the  outer  apartment  remain  unfinished.  J The  straight 
wralls  of  this  apartment  are  polished,  hut  the  outer  wall  of  the 
circular  room  is  only  smoothed  and  not  polished.  The  chisel 
marks  are  yet  visible  on  the  floor,  while  on  the  roof,  which 
has  only  been  partially  hewn,  the  cuts  of  the  chisels,  both 
broad  and  narrow,  are  still  sharp  and  distinct.  The  excava- 
tion of  the  roof  would  appear  to  have  been  abandoned,  owing 

* See  Plate  XX.,  No.  2 Inscription. 

t See  Plate  XIX.,  Fig.  2. 

% See  Plate  XIX.,  Fig.  3. 


Plate  XX 



IV.  Gopika,  or  Nagaijuni. 

I.  Kama  Chopar,  at  A. 

| qA^° 

V.  Vapiya,  or  Well  Cave. 

^ STS  A 5L  $ 

<*>'»**  ii-o 


II.  Sudama,  at  B. 

^'4”  ^ Sv1^  ^ 

VI.  Vadathi  Cave. 


8tsT$®«S&3«&  *! 

III.  Viswamitra,  at  P. 

i*****^,*-^*  a*®  |d 

8*  0J  °°°<$ 

Ag  & 4 CrxT JX  4*  (^6A  ^ 


lagarjum  Cave 


W <S  <£§1  3^$,  «- 
™.  ^J^pLo1  3 i Jr ^ 2rftfoVa*j 

a1  fcflZq:  *)?  a2  hvf^jcjus't  : b ^<S(^^c{XfX 

-■  rzl^wjy]^-  o jtfJhSrw^^iO^^-A, 

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A.  Cunrunguam,  del 



to  the  work  having  reached  a deep  fissure,  which  forms  one 
of  the  natural  lines  of  cleavage  of  the  rock.  It  possesses  no 

The  door- way  of  this  cave  is  exactly  of  the  same  size 
and  of  the  same  Egyptian  form  as  that  of  the  Sudama  Cave, 
hut  the  entrance  porch  has  been  much  enlarged,  and  has  been 
sculptured  to  represent  what  I believe  to  be  the  ornamental 
entrance  of  a wooden  building.  A tolerably  faithful  sketch 
of  this  entrance  will  be  found  in  Buchanan,*  but  owing  to  the 
accumulation  of  rubbish  at  the  time  the  sketch  was  taken, 
the  full  height  of  the  work  is  not  shown.  The  incriptions 
also  are  represented  as  extending  below  the  top  of  the  door- 
way on  one  side,  which  is  not  the  case,  as  they  are  all  con- 
fined to  the  semi-circular  space  above  the  door.  This  sketch, 
however,  shows  distinctly  the  ends  of  the  roofing  beams  and 
the  bambu  lattice  work  of  the  gable,  just  such  as  may  still 
be  seen  in  the  wooden  buildings  of  Barmah. 

As  the  inscriptions  over  the  door-way  of  this  cave  are  all 
in  the  same  character  as  those  of  the  later  princes  of  the 
Gupta  dynasty,  the  date  of  this  sculptured  fagade  may  be 
assigned  to  the  3rd  or  4th  century  of  our  era.  But  as  the 
cave  itself  corresponds  so  exactly,  both  in  size  and  in 
arrangements,  with  the  Sudama  Cave,  I feel  satisfied  that  it 
must  have  been  excavated  at  the  same  time,  and  that,  before 
the  enlargement  of  the  entrance  porch,  there  must  have 
existed  an  inscription  of  Asoka,  recording  the  name  and 
purpose  of  the  cave.  The  present  inscriptions  are  deeply 
and  boldly  cut,  but  the  letters  are  not  polished.  There  are 
two  distinct  inscriptions,  the  upper  one,  of  two  lines,  being 
somewhat  later  in  date  than  the  lower  one,  of  four  lines,  in 
rather  larger  letters.  Both  of  these  inscriptions  have  been 
translated  by  James  Prinsep,f  who,  owing  perhaps  to  the  mis- 
placement of  the  lines  of  his  fac-similis,  did  not  perceive 
that  translations  of  both  had  already  been  published  by 
Wilkins  in  the  second  volume  of  the  Asiatic  Researches. 
There  is  some  variation  in  the  two  versions  of  these  inscrip- 
tions, which  will  be  examined  hereafter. 

The  fourth  cave  of  the  Barabar  group  is  that  which  is 
called  Visiva  Mitra  by  Major  Kittoe,  but  which  was  named 

# Eastern  India,  Vol.  I.,  p.  104. 

+ Bengal^  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1837,  p.  647. 



simply  Fiswa-jhopri,  or  “ Vista’s  liut,”  by  my  informants. 
This  cave,  marked  D.  in  the  map,  is  excavated  in  a large  block 
of  granite  lying  to  the  eastward  of  the  cave  ridge  and  at  a 
somewhat  lower  level.  It  consists  of  two  rooms,  an  outer 
apartment  or  ante-chamber  which  is  polished  throughout,  and 
an  inner  apartment  of  11  feet  in  diameter,  which  is  rough 
and  unfinished.  The  former  is  14  feet  long  by  8 feet  4 inches 
broad,  and  has  an  inscription  on  the  right  hand  wall  of  four 
lines  in  the  ancient  Pali  character  of  Asoka’s  inscriptions. 
The  last  five  letters  have  been  purposely  mutilated  with  the 
chisel,  but  they  are  still  quite  legible.*  The  inscription, 
which  is  otherwise  perfect,  records  the  dedication  of  the  cave 
by  Raja  JPiyadcisi  (that  is,  Asoka  himself,)  in  the  12tli  year  of 
his  reign,  equivalent  to  252  B.  C.  This  is  the  only  inscription 
in  this  cave  which  would  seem  to  have  escaped  the  notice  of 
the  Brahmanical  occupants  or  visitors  of  the  other  caves. 
On  the  floor  of  this  outer  chamber  there  are  four  oblong 
socket  holes,  which  would  appear  to  have  been  intended  for 
the  reception  of  timber  framing,  as  suggested  by  Major 

The  great  cave  in  the  N&garjuni  Hill,  marked  E.  in  the 
map,  is  excavated  in  the  southern  face  of  the  rock,  at  a 
height  of  50  feet  above  the  country.  It  is  approached  by 
a flight  of  stone  steps,  but  the  entrance  is  concealed  partly 
by  a tree  and  partly  by  an  Idgdh  wall,  which  was  built 
by  the  last  Musalman  occupants.  It  was  inhabited  when 
visited  by  Major  Kittoe  in  1847,  but  was  empty  when  I 
saw  it.  This  cave  is  46  feet  5 inches  long  and  19  feet  2 
inches  broad,  both  ends  being  semi-circular.  The  walls 
are  6 feet  6 inches  high,  and  the  vaulted  roof  has  a rise  of 
4 feet,  making  a total  height  of  10  feet  6 inches. f The 
whole  of  the  interior  is  polished,  but  quite  plain.  There 
is  a low  brick  platform  of  modern  date  at  one  end,  which  is 
said  to  have  been  the  seat  of  a Musalman  Saint,  who  was  the 
disciple  and  successor  of  Haji  Harmayan.  The  door- way  of 
the  cave  is  of  Egyptian  form,  being  two  feet  6 inches  wide  at 
top,  and  2 feet  1T|  inches  at  bottom,  with  a height  of  G feet 
and  half  an  inch.  On  the  eastern  jamb  of  the  door-way 
there  is  an  inscription  in  ten  lines  of  the  same  family  and 
same  date  as  those  over  the  door-way  of  the  Lomas  Bislii 

* See  Plate  XX.,  No.  3 Inscription. 

t See  Plate  XIX.,  Fig.  5. 



Cave.  This  inscription  has  been  translated  by  Wilkins  and 
by  James  Prinsep.* * * §  On  the  western  jamb  of  the  door  there 
is  a short  inscription  in  large  letters  of  the  7th  or  Stli  century. 
Ac  h dry  a Sri  Yogananda,  “ the  teacher  Sri  Yogananda,”  whose 
name  will  be  found  repeated  in  another  cave.f 

On  the  outside,  immediately  over  the  door-way,  there 
is  a small  sunken  tablet,  containing  a short  inscription  of 
four  lines  in  the  ancient  Pali  characters  of  Asoka’s  edicts. 
This  has  been  translated  by  James  Prinsep. $ The  cave  is 
called  Gopi-ka-kubha,  that  is,  the  “ Gopi’s  or  milkmaid’s 
Cave.”  The  inscription  records  that  “ The  Gopi’s  Cave,  an 
abode  lasting  as  the  Sun  and  Moon,  was  caused  to  be  exca- 
vated by  Dasaratha,  beloved  of  the  Devas,  on  his  accession 
to  the  throne,  as  a hermitage  for  the  most  devoted  Bhadantas 
(Buddhist  ascetics). Ӥ 

The  other  two  caves  of  the  Nagarjuni  Group  are  situated 
in  a low  rocky  ridge  on  the  northern  side  of  the  hill.  To 
the  south,  aud  in  front  of  the  caves,  there  are  two  raised 
terraces.  The  lower  one  to  the  eastward  has  a well,  9 feet 
in  diameter  and  23  feet  deep,  immediately  in  front  of  the 
entrance  to  the  eastern  cave,  which  in  the  inscription  is 
called  the  “ Vapiya-ka-lcubha,  or  “ Vapiya  Cave,”  which  I 
believe  refers  to  the  well  (vapij  above  described,  and  which 
may,  therefore,  be  translated  as  the  “ Well  Cave.”  The 
upper  terrace  to  the  westward  is  120  feet  long  from  north  to 
south.  60  feet  broad  from  west  to  east,  and  10  feet  in  height 
above  the  plain.  The  walls  are  chiefly  of  brick,  but  there 
are  several  squared  stones  and  granite  pillars  near  the  top. 
These  must,  I think,  have  been  added  afterwards  by  the 
Muhammedans  when  they  occupied  the  caves,  for  the  platform 
is  covered  with  their  small  tombs.  All  around  there  are 
heaps  of  bricks  and  fragments  of  carved  and  squared  stones 
which  show  that  several  buildings  must  once  have  existed  in 
this  place.  The  upper  platform  I believe  to  have  been  the 
site  of  a vihar  or  Buddhist  chapel  monastery,  but  there  is 
nothing  now  remaining  to  prove  any  Buddhist  occupation, 
excepting  only  one  fragment  of  a standing  statue. 

* See  Asiatic  Researches,  I.,  282  ; and  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1837,  p.  672. 

t See  Plate  XX.,  No.  7 Inscription. 

£ Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1837,  p.  677. 

§ See  Plate  XX.,  No.  4 Inscription. 




The  Vapiya  Cave,  marked  P.  in  the  map,  has  a small 
porch  or  ante-chamber,  6 feet  long  by  5-|  feet  broad,  from 
which  a door-way  only  2 feet  10  inches  wide  leads  to  the 
principal  room,  which  is  16  feet  9 inches  long  and  11  feet  3 
inches  broad.  The  roof  is  vaulted,  and  10  feet  6 inches  in 
total  height,  The  whole  of  the  walls  are  highly  polished. 
On  the  left  hand  side  of  the  porch  there  is  an  inscription  of 
four  lines  in  the  old  Pali  characters  of  Asoka’s  edicts.* 
In  this  record  the  cave  is  called,  as  already  mentioned,  the 
Vapiya-ka-kublia,  or  “ the  Well  Cave,”  in  evident  allusion  to 
the  well  in  front  of  it.  The  remainder  of  the  inscription  is 
word  for  word  the  same  as  that  of  the  Gopi’s  Cave.  There 
are  several  short  inscriptions  on  the  side  walls  of  the  porch 
and  on  the  jambs  of  the  door-way,  but  they  are  of  little 
interest,  as  they  merely  record  the  names  of  visitors.  The 
longest  of  them  reads — 

Achdrya  Sri  Yogananda pranamati  Siddheswara,  “The 
teacher  Sri  Yogananda  offers  adoration  to  Siddheswara.”f 
In  this  inscription  we  find  the  name  of  the  lingam  now  exist- 
ing in  the  temple  of  the  Barabar  Peak,  recorded  in  characters 
of  the  6th  or  7th  century.  James  Prinsep  refers  them  to  the 
6th  century.  A still  older  inscription,  Videsa  Vasusya 
Kirttili,  or  “ the  renown  of  Vasu  of  Videsa,”  belongs  to  the 
age  of  the  Guptas.  According  to  Buchanan,  this  cave  is 
called  Mvrza  Mandai , or  the  “Mirza’s  house.” 

The  third  cave  of  the  Nagarjuni  Group,  marked  G.  in  the 
map,  is  situated  immediately  to  the  westward  of  the  last 
cave,  in  a gap  or  natural  cleft  of  the  rock,  which  has  pro- 
bably been  enlarged  by  art.  The  entrance  to  the  cave  lies  in 
this  gap  facing  the  east.  It  is  a mere  passage,  only  2 feet 
10  inches  in  width  and  6 feet  1^  inch  in  height,  with  a 
length  of  7 feet  2 inches  on  the  northern  side,  and  of  5 feet 
9 inches  on  the  southern  side.  There  are  socket  holes  both 
above  and  below  for  the  reception  of  a wooden  door.  The 
cave  itself  is  16  feet  4 inches  by  4 feet  3 inches  ; but  it  has 
been  divided  into  two  rooms  by  a rude  brick  wall.  This 
must  have  been  the  work  of  some  ascetic  of  former  days,  as 
the  only  opening  to  the  inner  room  appears  to  be  too  small 
for  the  passage  of  any  grown-up  mar,  and  could  only  have 

* See  Plate  XX.,  No.  5 Inscription,  and  Plate  XIX.,  Fig.  6,  for  plan. 

t See  Plate  XX.,  No.  8 Inscription. 



been  used  by  the  occupant  for  the  reception  of  food.  On  the 
right  hand  jamb  of  the  door-way  there  is  an  inscription 
of  four  lines  in  the  old  Pali  characters  of  Asoka’s  edicts,  in 
which  this  cave  is  called  the  Vadathi-ka-kubha.  The  re- 
mainder of  the  record  is  letter  for  letter  the  same  as  those  of 
the  Gopi  and  Vapiya  Caves.  The  meaning  of  the  name  of 
Vadathi  I am  not  able  to  explain.  The  root  vada  means  to 
separate  or  divide,  to  surround  or  encompass,  and  also  to 
cover.  Any  one  of  these  meanings  might  be  appropriately 
applied  as  descriptive  of  the  peculiar  position  of  this  cave, 
for  it  is  entirely  separated  from  the  other  cave ; it  is  encom- 
passed by  the  bluff  rocks  of  the  gap  in  which  it  is  situated, 
and  is  so  effectually  covered  or  screened  from  view,  that  it 
altogether  escaped  the  notice  of  Mr.  Hathorne  when  he 
made  copies  of  the  inscriptions  in  the  Gopi  and  Vapiya  caves 
for  James  Prinsep.  I think,  therefore,  that  the  term 
“ secluded”  would  be  descriptive  of  the  position  of  the  cave, 
and  I would  suggest  that  Vadatliika  may  probably  be  a 
vernacular  form  of  vada  + arthika,  the  whole  meaning 
simply  the  cave  of  the  “ secluded  mendicants.”  According  to 
Buchanan,  this  cave  is  called  the  abode  of  Haji  War  may  an* 

Prom  the  foregoing  account  of  the  Barabar  caves,  it  will 
be  seen  that  the  two  groups  are  separated  by  date  as  well  as 
by  position,  the  Satghara  caves  having  been  excavated  in  the 
12tli  and  19th  years  of  Baja  Diyadisi  (or  Asoka)  while 
those  of  Nagarjuni  were  excavated  in  the  first  year  of 
Dasaratlia , the  beloved  of  the  Devas.  According  to  the 
Vishnu  Purina,  Dasaratlia  was  the  grandson  of  Asoka,  and 
the  son  of  Suyasas  ; and  as  the  son  of  Asoka,  according  to  the 
Vaya  Purana,  reigned  only  eight  years,  the  accession  of 
Dasaratlia  must  have  taken  place  in  214  B.  C.  The  age  of 
the  Nagarjuni  caves  is,  therefore,  3L  years  later  than  that 
of  the  Karna-chopar,  and  38  years  later  than  that  of  the 
Sudama  and  Viswa  Caves. 

Prom  the  various  inscriptions  we  learn  that  these  caves 
have  been  successively  occupied  by  Buddhists  and  by 
Brahmanists.  They  were  originally  excavated  for  the  occu- 
pation of  Buddhist  monks  by  the  Kings  Asoka  and  Dasaratlia 
in  the  third  century  before  Christ.  About  the  third  or  fourth 
century  after  Christ,  the  Kings  Sardula  Varmma  and  Ananta 
Varinma,  placed  Brahmanical  images  of  Deva-matd,  of 

* Sec  Plate  XIX.,  Fig.  7,  for  plan,  and  Plate  XX.,  No.  6,  for  inscription. 



Katyayani , and  of  Mahadeva  and  his  wife  in  three  of  the 
caves.  At  a somewhat  later  date,  in  the  sixth  or  seventh  cen- 
tury, the  teacher  Yogananda  recorded  his  adoration  of  the  Sid- 
dheswara  ling  am.  This  occupation  by  Brahmans  in  the  seventh 
century  may  account  for  the  silence  of  the  Chinese  pilgrim 
Hwen  Thsang  regarding  the  caves,  which,  as  being  in  the 
immediate  neighbourhood  of  Gaya,  would  otherwise  have 
attracted  his  attention.  At  a still  later  date,  somewhere  about 
the  twelfth  century,  the  Jogi-Karmamarga  and  the  pilgrim 
JBhayankara  JS'dtha  visited  the  caves  and  inscribed  their 
names.*  Still  later,  the  Nagarjuni  caves  were  occupied  by 
Musalman  Pakirs.  The  Idgah  outside  the  Gopi  Cave  is  said 
to  be  only  150  years  old,  but  the  numerous  graves  on  the 
raised  terrace  in  front  of  the  Vapiya  Cave  would  seem  to 
denote  a much  longer  occupation  of  probably  not  less  than 
300  or  TOO  years. 

During  this  successive  occupation,  the  caves  would 
appear  to  have  received  new  names,  as  not  one  of  the  ancient 
names  recorded  in  the  inscriptions  has  been  preserved. 
Indeed,  the  most  ancient  names  would  seem  to  have  been  lost 
at  a very  early  date,  for  the  Gopi  Cave  of  Dasaratlia  is  desig- 
nated by  Ananta  Yarmma  as  “ this  cavern  of  the  Vindhya 
mountains,”  and  the  Vadathi  Cave  is  called  simply  “ this 
Cave,”  as  if  the  ancient  names  had  already  been  forgotten. 
Similarly,  the  Lomos  Bislii  Cave  is  called  JPravara-giri-gnhci, 
or  “ the  great  mountain  cave.”  Prom  these  instances,  I would 
infer  that  the  present  names  cf  the  caves  are  all  of  later  date 
than  the  time  of  Ananta  Yarmma  in  the  third  or  fourth  cen- 
tury. That  they  were  also  of  Brahmanical  origin  seems  to  me 
to  be  quite  certain  for  the  following  reasons : Karna-chopar 
I take  to  be  simply  Karna-jhopra,  or  “ Kama’s  Hut,”  so  named 
after  Kama,  King  of  Angga,  the  illegitimate  son  of  Pritha, 
the  mother  of  the  Pandus.  Similarly,  Lomas  Lis  hi,  who 
was  described  to  Buchanan  as  a “ very  hairy  saint,”  is  no 
doubt  the  same  as  Loma-pada  or  “ hairy  foot,”  who  was  also 
one  of  the  Kings  of  Angga  (or  Bliagalpur).  But  as  Loma- 
pada  is  only  a descriptive  appellation  of  a Prince  whose 
tiue  name  was  Dasaratlia,  it  would  seem  as  if  the  name  of 

* See  Plate  XX.,  D and  B inscriptions  from  the  Vapiya  or  Well  Cave.  The  other 
inscriptions  given  in  the  same  Plate  are  short  desultory  records  of  little  importance. 
No.  16,  daridra-kuntdra,  “ the  cave  of  poverty,”  and  Nos.  18  and  19,  klesa-kuntura,  “ the 
cave  of  affliction,”  no  doubt  refer  to  Buddhism,  and  show  that  these  caves  were  inhabited, 
or  at  least  visited,  by  Buddhist  votaries  as  late  as  the  third  or  fourth  century  A . I). 



Dasaratha,  the  founder  of  the  three  Nagarjuni  Caves,  had  ac- 
tually been  preserved  down  to  a comparatively  late  period,  and 
was  then  ignorantly  referred  by  the  Brahmans  to  the  early  king 
of  Angga,  instead  of  to  the  Maury  a Prince  of  Magatha.  Re- 
garding the  name  of  Sudama  or  Sudhama,  I am  unable  to 
offer  any  conjecture ; hut  Viswamitra  was  one  of  the  most 
celebrated  of  the  seven  Iiisliis,  or  great  Brahmanical  Saints. 

The  silence  of  Hwen  Tlisang  regarding  the  caves  has 
been  already  noticed  ; hut  I have  a suspicion  that  he  had  heard 
of  the  celebrated  spring  of  the  Fatal  Gangd  at  the  foot  of  the 
Barabar  Hill.  According  to  his  account,  there  was  a famous 
spring  of  pure  water  situated  at  30  li  (or  5 miles)  to  the  north 
of  Gaya.*  Now,  as  I could  not  hear  of  any  spring  to  the 
northward  of  Gaya  nearer  than  Barabar,  I would  suggest 
that  Hwen  Thsang’s  distance  of  3<>  li  should  be  corrected  to 
130  li  (or  21§  miles),  which  would  make  his  famous  spring 
agree  exactly  with  the  position  of  the  Fatal  Ganga,  accord- 
ing to  the  distance  by  road,  which  is  13  miles  to  the  Bela 
Dak  Bungalow  + 6 to  the  Kauwa-Dol  Hill  + 2 more  to  the 
Patal  Ganga.  Hwen  Thsang  adds  that  “the  Indians,  follow- 
ing an  ancient  tradition,  called  this  spring  the  ‘holy  water’ 
(l’eau  sainte),  and  that  at  all  times  whoever  drank  of  it,  or 
bathed  in  it,  was  instantly  purified  from  the  stain  of  his  sins.” 
Now  the  source  of  the  Patal  Ganga  is  still  held  in  such  esteem 
that,  according  to  Buchanan,  from  20,000  to  50,000  people 
assemble  annually  in  the  middle  of  the  month  of  Bhadrapada 
to  bathe  in  its  waters,  and  about  500  people  bathe  daily 
during  the  whole  of  that  month. 

Should  this  identification  be  correct,  it  would  seem  to 
he  almost  certain  that  towards  the  middle  of  the  seventh  cen- 
tury of  our  era,  not  only  were  these  caves  occupied  by  the 
Brahmans,  but  the  very  memory  of  their  Buddhist  origin 
had  either  been  forgotten  or  was  carefully  concealed. 


The  Fharawat  group  of  hills  lies  immediately  to  the 
northward  of  the  Barabar  hills,  about  1^  mile  distant.  There 
are  two  distinct  ridges  running  from  west  to  east,  that  to  the 

Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  455. 



south  being  nearly  two  miles  in  length  -with  three  peaks 
named  Saleya,  Gureya , and  Dhaoli*  The  nearest  road  from 
Bara  bar  to  Dharawat  lies  through  a pass  between  the  Gureya 
and  Dhaoli  Hills.  The  northern  ridge  consists  of  a single 
hill  named  Ratani,  which  in  former  clays  was  occupied  by 
some  establishment  of  the  Buddhists.  On  the  northern  slope 
of  the  hill  there  are  two  brick  terraces  which  have  been  built 
up  against  the  rock.  The  eastern  terrace  is  60  feet  long  by 
20  feet  broad,  and  50  feet  above  the  plain.  Near  the  top  the 
solid  brick-work  can  still  be  seen  for  20  feet  in  height,  below 
which  the  brick  rubbish  reaches  to  the  foot  of  the  hill.  The 
second  terrace  lies  more  than  200  feet  to  the  westward  of 
the  other  ; it  has  a front  of  250  feet,  but  its  height  is  not 
more  than  15  feet  above  the  plain.  On  this  terrace  there  are 
two  broken  Buddhist  figures,  and  beneath  it  there  are  four 
others,  of  which  one  bears  the  usual  Buddhist  formula  of 
“ Ye  Dliarmma  hetu  prabhava , &c.,”  in  characters  of  the 
9th  or  10th  century. 

To  the  north  of  the  Batani  Hill  there  is  a large  tank  called 
Chandokhar  Tal,  2,000  feet  in  length  and  800  feet  in  width. 
On  the  eastern  embankment  there  is  a new  temple  to  Maha- 
deva,  only  three  years  old,  and  close  beside  it  a very  small 
old  temple  to  Narsingh.  Outside  this  temple  there  is  a very 
fine  life-size  statue  named  Bhairav.  The  figure  stands  under 
a thick  stem  of  lotus  which  forms  an  arch  overhead,  and  from 
which  little  curling  branches  strike  off  on  both  sides,  ending 
in  lotus  flowers  which  support  tiny  figures  of  men,  women, 
and  animals.  The  statue  has  twelve  arms,  and  bears  in  the 
head-dress  a small  figure  of  Buddha  squatted  with  hands  in 
lap.  I recognized  it  at  once  as  a statue  of  the  famous 
Dodhisatwa  Avalokitesivara.  Beside  the  statue,  there  are 
several  sculptured  stones  containing  rows  of  Buddhas,  and 
also  several  fragments  of  votive  stupas,  and  two  slabs  with 
representations  of  the  Nava-graha,  or  “ nine  planets.”  There 
are  also  numerous  fragments  of  sculpture  under  a Pipal  tree 
close  by,  two  of  which  bear  inscriptions  in  characters  of  the 
9th  or  10th  century. 

To  the  north-east  of  the  Chandokhar  Tal  there  is  an  ex- 
tensive mound  of  brick  ruin,  which  is  probably  only  the 
remains  of  the  former  town  of  Dharawat.  In  the  north-west 

* See  Plate  No.  XVIII. 



corner  of  this  mound  there  are  two  small  eminences,  which 
may  be  the  remains  of  temples,  hut  as  the  surface  of  the 
mound  now  presents  nothing  hut  small  fragments  of  bricks, 
all  the  larger  hricks  having  been  removed  to  furnish  materials 
for  the  present  village,  it  is  quite  impossible  to  say  what  kind 
of  buildings  may  once  have  stood  upon  it.  All  that  can  he 
inferred,  I think,  from  the  present  remains  is,  that  Dliarawat 
must  at  one  time,  probably  about  the  8th  or  9th  century, 
have  been  the  seat  of  a considerable  Buddhist  community. 
Major  Kittoe  paid  a hurried  visit  to  Dliarawat  hv  moon-light. 
He  notices  the  twelve-armed  figure,  which  he  calls  a Buddhist 
sculpture,  as  being  very  remarkable. 


The  village  of  Besarh,  or  Besddh  in  Nagari  characters,  is 
situated  27  miles,  a little  to  the  east  of  north  from  Patna,  and 
20  miles  from  Hajipur  on  the  left  hank  of  the  Ganges.  Both 
the  distance  and  direction  from  Patna  point  to  this  place  as  the 
representative  of  the  ancient  Vaisali.  The  name  also  is  the 
same,  as  it  is  written  Besarh  by  Ahul  Pazl  in  his  Ain 
Akbari.*  Now,  Hwen  Thsang  places  the  King’s  Palace  in 
Vaisali  at  120  li,  or  20  miles,  to  the  east  of  north  from  the 
northern  hank  of  the  Ganges  opposite  Pataliputra,  that  is, 
from  the  present  Hajipur. f He  also  describes  the  King’s 
Palace  as  being  from  4 to  5 li  (from  3,500  to  4,400  feet)  in 
circuit,  which  agrees  with  the  size  of  the  ruined  fort  now 
called  Baja  Bisal-ka-garh,  which  is  1,580  feet  long  and  750 
feet  broad  inside,  or  4,660  feet  in  circuit  round  the  crest  of  the 
mound.  This  almost  perfect  coincidence  of  name,  position, 
and  dimensions,  seems  quite  sufficient  to  place  the  identifi- 
cation of  Besarh  with  Vaisali  beyond  all  reasonable  doubt. 
I will,  therefore,  now  proceed  to  describe  the  objects  of  interest 
that  still  remain  in  Besarh  and  the  neighbouring  village  of 
Bakhra,  which  will  afford  further  proof  of  the  identity  of 
Besarh  and  Vaisali. 

These  ruins  were  visited  by  Mr.  J.  Stephenson  in  1834, 

I and  described  by  him  in  Prinsep’s  Journal.*  They  consist 
of  two  distinct  groups,  one  at  Besarh  itself,  and  the  other 

J — — 

* Gladwin’s  Translation,  II.,  198. 

+ Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  399.  To  Swetapura  90  li,  plus  30  li  to  the  Ganges.  In 
Vol.  I.,  p.  137,  the  distance  to  Swetapura  is  stated  to  be  100  li. 

£ Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1833,  p.  128. 



2 miles  to  tlie  north -north-west  of  Besarh,  and  1 mile  to  the 
south-east  of  Baklira.  But  the  whole  of  these  must  have 
belonged  to  the  ancient  Vaisali,  as  Hwen  Tlisang  describes 
the  old  foundations  of  the  city,  although  even  then  much 
ruined,  as  occupying  a circuit  of  from  60  to  70  li,  or  from 
10  to  12  miles.  Now,  an  oblong  square,  3^  miles  from 
north  to  south,  and  2\  miles  from  west  to  east,  making  a 
circuit  of  exactly  12  miles,  would  include  both  Baklira  and 
Besarh  and  all  the  remains  that  are  at  present  traceable. 
This  of  itself  would  be  sufficient  to  show  that  the  Baklira 
ruins  must  have  formed  part  of  the  ancient  Vaisali;  hut  the 
fact  will  he  placed  byond  all  doubt  when  I come  to  describe 
the  ruins  themselves,  which  correspond  in  the  most  remark- 
able manner  with  the  minute  details  recorded  by  Hwen 

The  remains  at  Besarh  consist  of  a large  deserted  fort, 
and  a ruined  brick  stupa.  The  fort  is  a large  brick  covered 
mound  of  earth,  1,580  feet  long  from  north  to  south,  and  750 
feet  broad  from  west  to  east,  measured  from  edge  to  edge.* 
It  has  round  towers  at  the  four  corners,  and  the  whole  is 
surrounded  by  a ditch  which  was  full  of  water  at  the  time 
of  my  visit.  The  ruined  ramparts  along  the  edge,  and  the 
four  towers  at  the  comers,  are  somewhat  higher  than  the 
mass  of  the  mound,  which  has  a general  elevation  of  from 
6 to  8 feet  above  the  country.  The  height  of  the  north-west 
bastion  I found  by  measurement  to  be  12  feet  above  the  fields, 
and  15  feet  above  the  bottom  of  the  ditch,  where  it  was  dry. 
The  main  entrance  was  in  the  middle  of  the  south  face,  where 
there  still  exists  a broad  embankment  across  the  ditch,  as  well 
as  a passage  through  the  rampart.  In  the  northern  face  there 
was  probably  only  a postern  gate,  as  there  is  no  passage 
through  the  rampart,  and  no  trace  of  any  embankment  across 
the  ditch,  excepting  the  fact  that  the  only  dry  part  of  the 
ditch  is  on  this  face.  The  only  building  within  the  fort  is  a 
small  brick  temple  of  modem  date. 

Outside  the  south-west  angle  of  the  fort,  and  about  1,000 
feet  distant,  there  is  a ruined  mound  of  solid  brick-work,  23 
feet  8 inches  in  height  above  the  fields.  The  whole  of  the 
top  has  been  levelled  for  the  reception  of  Musalman  tombs, 
of  which  the  largest,  ascribed  to  Mir  Abdal,  is  said  to  be  500 

* See  Plate  No.  XXI. 



years  old.  Mr.  Steplienson  gives  tlie  name  of  the  Saint  as 
Mir  Abdullah,  and  the  age  of  the  tomb  as  250  years.  My 
informant  was  the  Musalman  whom  I found  in  charge  of  the 


tomb.  On  the  south  edge  of  the  mound  there  is  a magnifi- 
cent wide-spreading  Banian  Tree,  supported  on  numerous 
trunks,  which  shades  the  whole  of  the  tombs.  On  the  same 
side  also  a flight  of  steps  leads  down  to  the  village  of  Besarh. 
This  brick  mound  is  the  ruin  of  one  of  the  stupas,  or  solid 
towers  of  Yaisali,  of  which  so  many  are  described  by  Hwen 
Thsang.  “ Both  within  and  without  and  all  round  the  town 
of  Vaisali,”  says  he,  “ the  sacred  monuments  are  so  many 
that  it  would  be  difficult  to  enumerate  them.”*  He  has, 
however,  described  a few  of  them,  which  were  situated  to  the 
south  of  the  town,  one  of  which,  I have  no  doubt,  is  the  solid 
brick  mound  that  now  bears  the  tomb  of  the  Musalman 
Saint,  Mir  Abdal. 

At  a short  distance  to  the  south  of  the  town,  there  was  a 
vihar,  and  also  a stupa  in  the  garden  which  Amradarika  had 
presented  to  Buddha.  Beside  the  garden  there  was  another 
stupa  erected  on  the  spot  where  Buddha  had  announced  his 
approaching  Nirvana  (or  death).  Beyond  this  there  was  a 
third  stupa  on  the  spot  where  the  “ thousand  sons  had  recog- 
nized their  mother.”  A fourth  stupa  stood  over  the  spot  where 
Buddha  was  said  to  have  taken  exercise,  and  a fifth,  erected 
; on  ancient  foundations,  commemorated  the  site  on  which  he 
had  explained  certain  sacred  books.  A sixth  stupa  held  the 
relics  of  one-half  of  the  body  of  Ananda,  the  other  half 
being  enshrined  at  Baja-griha.  The  hearing  of  these  stupas 
from  the  garden  of  Amradarika  is  not  stated ; but  as  the  mass 
of  the  existing  brick  ruins  lies  to  the  westward  of  the  southern 
entrance  of  the  fort,  the  whole  of  these  monuments  must 
have  been  situated  in  that  direction.  Of  the  six  stupas 
described  by  Hwen  Thsang,  it  is  probable  that  only  two  were  of 
any  size,  namely,  that  erected  on  the  spot  where  Buddha  had 
announced  his  approaching  Nirvana,  and  that  which  contained 
j the  relics  of  the  half  body  of  Ananda.  It  is  much  to  be 
regretted  that  the  presence  of  the  Musalman  tombs  on  the 
; top  of  this  ancient  stupa  effectually  precludes  any  attempt  at 
excavation,  otherwise  a shaft  sunk  down  through  the  centre 
of  the  mound  would  probably  reveal  the  purpose  for  which 
the  monument  had  been  erected.  The  stupa  built  by  the 

* Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  395. 



King  of  Magadha  in  Baja-griha,  over  the  other  half  of  the 
remains  of  Ananda,  is  said  by  Hwen  Thsang  to  have  been  a 
superb  one.  An  annual  fair  is  held  at  the  Besarh  stupa  in 
the  month  of  Chaitrci,  when  many  thousands  of  people  as- 
semble at  the  shrine  of  Mir  Abdal.  As  the  occurrence  of 
this  fair  is  regulated  by  the  solar  reckoning  of  the  Hindus, 
and  not  by  the  lunar  year  of  the  Muhammedans,  I conclude 
that  the  festival  was  established  long  before  the  time  of  the 
Musalman  Saint.  I would,  therefore,  as  the  fair  is  held 
beside  the  ruined  stupa,  connect  the  festival  with  some 
celebration  in  honour  of  Buddha,  or  of  one  of  his  disciples. 
Two  ornamental  stone  pillars  of  mediaeval  date  were  found  a 
short  time  ago  in  excavating  near  the  foot  of  the  mound. 

To  the  westward  of  the  fort  there  is  a large  sheet  of 
water  with  an  island  on  the  east  side,  on  which  is  situated  a 
small  temple  dedicated  to  Mahadeva.  Inside  the  temple  all 
the  sculptures  found  in  the  ruins  of  Besarh  have  been  col- 
lected. The  principal  sculpture  is  a group  of  Mahadeva 
seated  on  his  bull  Nandi  and  caressing  Durga,  or  Gauri,  who 
is  seated  on  a lion.  There  is  also  a standing  figure  of  the 
four-armed  Vishnu  with  a radiated  halo  round  his  head.  In 
his  hands  he  holds  a club,  a ball,  a quoit,  and  a shell.  A third 
sculpture  represents  the  Ashta  Sakti,  or  eight  female  energies 
seated  on  their  respective  vahans  or  vehicles.  The  remaining 
sculptures  are  Buddhistical.  One  is  of  Buddha  the  Ascetic, 
two  represent  the  DhyAni  Buddha,  Amitabha,  while  a fourth 
is  a seated  figure  of  the  famous  Bodhisatwa  Avalokiteswara. 

There  are  several  small  sheets  of  water  to  the  north  and 
north-west  of  the  fort,  but  when  I saw  them  they  were  irre- 
gular in  shape  and  seemed  to  me  mostly  natural  hollows  filled 
with  the  rain  which  had  recently  fallen.  The  Natives,  how- 
ever, say  that  formerly  there  were  52  tanks  {Bawan  Pokhar) 
around  Besarh,  two  of  which  still  exist  in  the  neighbourhood 
of  Bakhra. 

The  remains  at  Bakhra  are  all  situated  on  a low  mound 
just  one  mile  to  the  south-east  of  the  village,  and  two  miles 
to  the  north  north-west  of  the  Port  of  Besarh.*  The  greater 
portion  of  this  mound  is  now  cultivated,  but  the  whole 
surface  is  covered  with  small  fragments  of  bricks.  The  edge 
of  the  mound  is  best  defined  on  the  western  side,  where  it 

* See  Plate  XXL 

Plate  XXII 



ground*  j/.evel 


Level  ofFC elds 
Level  of  Water 


Back  View 


Side  View 

A.  Cunningham,  ue  . Lith-  Surv-.  Genr1*  Office  Cat  June  1871, 



lias  an  elevation  of  four  feet.  The  remains  consist  of — Is/, 
a stone  pillar  surmounted  by  a lion ; 2nd,  a ruined  stupa  of 
solid  brick ; 3rd,  a tank ; 4 th,  four  small  eminences  which 
mark  the  sites  of  ancient  buildings ; and  5 tli,  a very  line 
life-size  statue  of  Buddha  the  Ascetic,  which  was  discovered 
only  eight  years  ago.  The  pillar  and  the  ruined  stupa  have 
already  been  described  by  Mr.  Stephenson,  and  the  site  has 
already  been  identified  by  M.  Vivien  de  St.  Martin,  as  well  as 
by  myself,  with  the  Vaisali  of  the  Buddhists. 

The  lion  pillar  of  Bakhra  is  situated  in  the  middle  of  a 
small  court-yard  with  small  rooms  on  three  sides — the  resi- 
dence of  a Scmyasi  who  has  recently  settled  at  this  place. 
The  people  call  him  Baba.  He  is  about  30  years  of  age,  and 
appeared  to  me  very  like  a sepoy.  He  was  obliging  and 
communicative,  and  gave  me  both  assistance  and  information. 
If  he  had  been  surly  and  disobliging,  he  might  easily  have 
raised  religious  scruples,  and  thus  have  thwarted  me  from 
making  an  excavation  round  the  pillar,  which  I was  parti- 
cularly anxious  to  do,  as  it  was  evident  to  me  that  the 
column  had  sunk  considerably  into  the  earth.  The  man  had 
a few  followers,  and  appeared  to  be  very  comfortable.  There 
was  plenty  of  food  stored  in  his  house,  and  a fine  old  well  on 
the  east  side  of  the  court-yard. 

The  shaft  of  the  pillar  is  a single  block  of  polished 
sand-stone,  18  feet  in  height  above  the  present  ground  level 
of  the  court- vard  in  which  it  stands,  and  27  feet  11  inches 
above  the  surrounding  fields.  The  difference  between  these 
two  measurements,  or  9 feet  11  inches,  represents  the  ac- 
cumulation of  rubbish  around  the  pillar  above  the  general 
level  of  the  country.  I made  an  excavation  all  round 
the  shaft  until  I reached  water  at  a depth  of  14  feet  below 
the  level  of  the  court-yard,  and  of  4 feet  1 inch  below  the 
level  of  the  fields.  The  water  in  the  old  well  close  by  was 
standing  at  the  same  level.  As  the  whole  of  the  shaft  ex- 
posed by  the  excavation  is  polished,  it  appears  to  me  certain 
that  the  pillar  must  have  sunk  into  the  ground  at  least  4 
feet  1 inch  in  depth,  and  most  probably  several  feet  more, 
as  there  was  no  appearance  of  any  basement  at  the  point 
reached  by  my  excavation.  The  whole  height  of  shaft 
above  the  water  level  is  32  feet.  I was  informed  by  an  old 
man  at  Besarh  that  the  Saheb  who  excavated  the  Bakhra 



stupa  left  a Bengali  to  make  an  excavation  round  tlie  pillar, 
and  that  just  at  the  water  level  he  found  a square  pedestal 
in  three  steps.  Before  I began  my  own  excavation,  I was 
told  that  a previous  excavation  had  been  made  down  to  the 
water  level  without  revealing  any  inscriptions.  I found,  how- 
ever, a few  short  records  in  the  curious  flourished  characters, 
which  James  Prinsep  called  “ shell-shaped,”  and  which  Major 
Kittoe  thought  somewhat  resembled  Chinese.  I believe  that 
these  characters  belong  to  the  7th  or  8th  century.  But  at 
whatever  period  these  may  have  been  in  use,  it  is  certain 
that  at  least  4 or  5 feet  more  of  the  shaft  must  then  have 
been  exposed  to  view.  The  pillar  now  leans  to  the  westward, 
and  is  from  4 to  5 inches  out  of  the  perpendicular  at  the 
ground  level.  I attribute  the  sinking  of  the  pillar  partly  to 
the  insufficiency  of  the  basement,  and  partly  to  the  want  of 
stiffness  in  the  sub-soil,  which  is  a loose  wet  sand.  In  such 
a soil  the  basement  should  have  been  well  spread  out,  with 
its  foundation  resting  on  xvells,  so  as  to  offer  an  effectual 
resistance  to  the  thrust  of  the  heavy  pillar  which,  with  its 
capital,  must  weigh  nearly  50  tons.  The  shaft  alone  above 
the  water  level  weighs  37  tons.* 

The  upper  diameter  of  the  pillar  is  38' 7 inches,  and  the 
lower  diameter  at  the  water  level  is  49'8  inches,  the  mean 
diameter  being  44’2  inches,  as  the  slope  of  the  shaft  is  quite 
straight.  The  pillar  is  surmounted  by  a bell-shaped  capital, 
2 feet  10  inches  in  height,  with  an  oblong  abacus  of  12 
inches,  making  the  whole  height  of  capital  3 feet  10  inches. 
This  forms  the  pedestal  of  a lion  statue  of  life-size.  The 
animal  is  seated  facing  the  north  with  his  hind  legs  under 
him,  with  his  mouth  open  as  if  snarling,  and  his  tongue 
slightly  protruded.  The  attitude  is  rather  stiff,  and  the  fore 
legs  of  the  animal  seem  to  be  both  too  short  and  too  thick ; 
but  the  hair  of  the  mane  is  boldly  and  cleverly  treated,  and 
the  general  appearance  of  the  statue  is  certainly  striking. 

There  is  no  inscription  on  the  pillar  to  declare  the  object 
for  which  it  was  erected.  It  is  possible  that  a short  inscrip- 
tion may  once  have  existed,  for  the  surface  of  the  pillar  has 
suffered  considerably,  and  in  one  part,  2\  feet  above  the 
present  ground  level,  the  polished  surface  has  peeled  off  all 
round.  Numerous  names  of  visitors  have  been  cut  on  the 

* See  Plate  XXII.  for  a view  of  this  pillar. 



pillar.  Some  few  are  of  Musalmans,  several  of  Hindus,  but 
the  most  of  Christians.  The  visitors,  I was  told,  wrote  their 
names  in  charcoal,  and  a village  black-smith  afterwards 
traced  them  roughly  with  a chisel  The  whole  surface  of  the 
pillar  within  reach  is  disfigured  with  these  rude  scrawls,  of 
which  the  neatest  and  smallest  is  that  of  “ Beuben  Burrow, 
1792.”  Some  of  the  ISagari  inscriptions  consist  of  two  short 
lines,  but  none  of  them,  as  far  as  I could  judge,  are  more 
than  200  or  300  years  old.  The  pillar  is  known  by  the 
people  as  BMm-Sen-kd-ldt  and  Bldm-Sen-kd-danda. 

Immediately  to  the  south  of  the  pillar  there  is  a small 
tank,  200  feet  from  east  to  west,  and  150  feet  from  north  to 
south.  It  has  no  name,  but  is  simply  called  Kund  or 
Pokhar.  To  the  south,  at  a distance  of  35  feet,  there  is  a 
low  mound  of  broken  bricks,  which  must  have  been  the  site 
of  some  ancient  building.  At  short  distances  from  the 
south-west  and  north-west  corners  of  the  tank,  there  are  two 
similar  mounds.  The  probable  identification  of  the  tank  and 
mounds  will  be  noticed  hereafter. 

Hue  north  from  the  pillar,  and  just  outside  the  court- 
yard, there  is  a ruined  stupa  of  solid  brick  surmounted  by  a 
fine  old  Pipal  tree.  This  stupa  is  25  feet  10  inches  in  height 
above  the  fields,  but  only  15  feet  11  inches  above  the  present 
ground  level  of  the  pillar.  An  excavation  has  been  made 
right  into  the  centre  of  the  mound  from  the  north-west.  The 
excavation,  I was  informed  by  an  old  man,  was  superintended 
by  a Bengali  servant  of  some  Saheb  more  than  50  years  ago, 
hut  no  discovery  was  made.  This  account  agrees  with  that 
given  by  Mr.  Stephenson,  who  relates  that  the  excavation  was 
made  by  a Hoctor,  resident  at  Muzafarpur,  30  years  ago,  that 
is,  previous  to  1835,  or  about  A.  H.  1805.  As  the  centre  of 
the  mass  had  evidently  been  reached  by  the  Bengali,  I did  not 
think  it  necessary  to  make  any  further  excavation. 

To  the  north-east  of  the  ruined  stupa,  at  a distance  of 
250  feet,  there  is  a low  mound  similar  to  those  near  the  tank, 
and  due  north,  at  a distance  of  500  feet,  there  is  a small 
temple  containing  a life-size  statue  of  Buddha  the  Ascetic, 
which  was  discovered  only  eight  years  ago  in  digging  up  some 
brick  walls  immediately  to  the  east  of  the  temple.  The 
statue  is  perfect,  not  even  the  nose  being  broken.  There 
is  a small  Buddha  on  each  side  of  the  figure,  and  there  are 


two  lions  on  the  pedestal,  besides  a long  inscription,  "begin- 
ning with  the  usual  Buddhist  formula.  There  is  no  date, 
but  the  characters  are  those  of  the  8th  or  9th  century.  The 
spot  on  which  the  figure  was  found  was  most  probably  the 
site  of  an  ancient  vihdr  or  Buddhist  chapel  monastery,  in 
which  the  statue  was  enshrined.  I saw  several  of  the  bricks 
with  bevelled  edges  similar  to  those  that  form  part  of  the 
mouldings  of  the  Great  Temple  at  Buddha  Gaya,  and  of  the 
stupa  at  Giryek. 

The  lion  pillar  and  the  surrounding  remains  at  Bakhra 
I would  identify  with  a group  of  holy  buildings  described 
by  Hwen  Thsang  as  being  situated  upwards  of  one  mile  to 
the  north-west  of  the  Palace  of  Vaisali.  The  exact  distance 
is  not  mentioned,  but  the  existing  remains  correspond  so 
closely  with  his  details  regarding  the  situation  and  nature 
of  the  different  objects,  that  there  can  be  no  reasonable 
doubt  as  to  the  identity  of  the  whole  group.  The  first  work 
noticed  by  Hwen  Thsang  as  being  upwards  of  one  mile  to 
the  north-west  of  the  Palace  of  Vaisali  is  a stupa  that  was 
built  by  King  Asoka,  of  which  the  purpose  is  not  stated. 
Beside  the  stupa  there  was  a stone  column  from  50  to  60 
feet  in  height,  surmounted  by  the  statue  of  a lion.  To  the 
south  of  the  pillar  there  was  a tank  which  had  been  ex- 
cavated by  a flock  of  monkeys  for  the  use  of  Buddha.  At 
a short  distance  to  the  west  of  the  tank  there  was  a stupa 
erected  on  the  spot  where  the  monkeys  climbed  a tree  and 
filled  Buddha’s  begging  pot  with  honey.  On  the  south 
side  of  the  tank  there  was  another  stupa  erected  on  the 
spot  where  the  monkeys  offered  the  honey  to  Buddha,  and 
at  the  north-west  angle  of  the  tank  there  was  a statue  of 
a monkey.* 

The  ruined  stupa  to  the  north  of  the  pillar  I would 
identify  with  Asoka’s  stupa,  and  the  small  tank  to  the  south 
of  the  pillar  with  the  celebrated  Markata-hradci  or  “ Mon- 
keys’ Tank,”  which,  as  we  have  already  seen,  was  in  the  same 
position  with  respect  to  the  lion  pillar.  The  two  low  mounds 
to  the  west  and  south  of  the  tank  correspond  with  the  sites 
of  the  two  stupas  built  to  commemorate  the  monkey’s  offer- 
ing of  honey  to  Buddha ; and  the  low  mound  to  the  north- 
west agrees  exactly  with  the  site  of  the  monkey’s  statue. 

# Julicn’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  pp.  386-3S7. 



The  correspondence  between  the  several  objects  so  minutely 
detailed  by  Hwen  Thsang  and  the  existing  remains  is  com- 
plete. The  only  point  on  which  there  is  any  seeming  discre- 
pancy is  the  height  of  the  pillar,  which  was  from  50  feet  to 
60  feet,  while  the  actual  pillar  may,  perhaps,  he  less.  The 
height  of  the  lion  statue  is  4 feet  6 inches,  that  of  the  capi- 
tal is  3 feet  10  inches,  and  that  of  the  polished  shaft  down  to 
the  water  level  is  35  feet  10  inches,  making  altogether  a height 
of  only  44  feet  2 inches  ; but  as  neither  the  basement  of  the 
pillar  nor  the  end  of  the  polished  portion  of  the  shaft  have 
been  reached,  it  is  quite  certain  that  the  pillar  must  have 
been  higher  than  this  measurement.  I would,  therefore,  fix 
its  probable  original  height  at  about  50  feet,  which  would 
then  agree  with  the  measurement  of  Hwen  Thsang. 

Vaisali,  the  Capital  of  the  Lichclihavi  family,  was  espe- 
cially famous  as  the  scene  of  the  second  Buddhist  Synod  in 
443  B.  C.  The  assembly  was  held,  according  to  Hwen 
Thsang,  at  a spot  2-|  miles  to  the  south-east  of  the  city,  but 
I could  find  no  remains  in  that  direction.  Vaisali  was  also 
celebrated  as  the  place  where  Buddha  had  announced  his 
approaching  Nirvana.  The  actual  spot  was  to  the  westward 
of  the  town,  but  after  the  announcement,  Buddha,  with  his 
cousin  disciple  Ananda,  repaired  to  the  Kutdgdra  hall,  where 
he  addressed  his  followers  for  the  last  time.  Kutagara,  which 
means  the  “ upper-storied  hall,”  was  a famous  edifice  situated 
in  the  Mahdvano  Vihdro,  in  which  Buddha  had  dwelt  during 
the  5th  year  of  his  teaching.*  Mahdvano  Vihdro  means 
“ the  Chapel  Monastery  of  the  Great  Forest.”  Fa-Hian 
speaks  of  “ a great  forest  and  a chapel  of  two  stories  ;”  but 
Hwen  Thsang  makes  no  allusion  to  the  upper-storied  hall, 
although,  as  we  know  from  the  Mdndhdtri  Sutra  of  the 
Divya  Avadana,  translated  by  Burnouf,  the  Kutdgdra  Hall 
was  situated  outlie  bank  of  the  Markata-hrada,  or  “ Monkey 
Tank.”f  From  Hwen  Thsang’s  silence  I infer  that  this  once 
famous  hall,  which  Fa-Hian  had  seen  about  A.  I).  410,  must 
have  b.ecome  ruined  before  A.  D.  640.  Altogether,  the  agree- 
ment of  these  details  is  so  very  close  that  I think  there  can 
be  little,  if  any,  doubt  that  the  Bakhra  ruins  represent  the 
site  of  the  group  of  sacred  objects  described  by  Hwen  Thsang. 
Even  the  great  forest  can  still  be  traced  in  the  numerous  fine 

* Tumour  iu  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1S33,  pp.  790  and  1200. 
t Introduction  k 1’Histoire  du  Buddhisme  Indien,  p.  71. 



groves  of  trees  which  surround  the  ruins  on  all  sides.  The 
name  of  Bakhra  may  possibly  have  been  derived  from  Vak 
(S.  Yacli)  “ to  speak,”  from  the  fact  that  in  the  Kutdgara 
Hall  Buddha  had  addressed  his  disciples  for  the  last  time. 


To  the  north -north-west,  distant  30  miles  from  Bes4rh, 
and  somewhat  less  than  two  miles  to  the  south  of  the  large 
village  of  Kesariya,  stands  a lofty  brick  mound  capped  by  a 
solid  brick  tower  of  considerable  size.  This  ruin  has  already 
been  brought  to  notice  by  Mr.  B.  H.  Hodgson,  hut  no  des- 
cription has  been  published,  and  in  the  sketch  taken  by  his 
Native  artist,  the  mound  appears  much  too  high  for  its 
breadth,  while  the  stupa  (or  dahgopa)  on  the  top  is  made 
much  too  small.* 

The  mound  of  Kesariya  is  a ruined  mass  of  solid  brick- 
work, 62  feet  in  height,  and  1,400  feet  in  circumference  at 
the  base  of  the  ruins.  On  the  top  of  this  there  is  a solid 
brick  stupa,  the  whole  surface  of  which  is  ruined,  excepting 
at  the  base,  which  is  still  perfect  in  several  places.  In  the 
most  perfect  part  there  are  15  courses  of  surface  brick-work 
still  in  good  order,  and  in  two  other  places  there  are  10  and 

11  courses  perfect.  Prom  these  three  points  I made  out  the 
base  of  the  stupa  to  be  68  feet  5 inches  in  diameter.  My 
measurement  of  the  height  was  necessarily  rough,  as  there 
was  no  defined  edge  at  the  top,  the  whole  being  thickly 
covered  with  long  grass.  After  much  trouble  I made  out  a 
height  of  38  feet  inches  for  the  cylindrical  portion,  and  of 

12  feet  10^  inches  for  the  dome,  or  altogether  of  51  feet  6 
inches.  But  as  the  height  of  the  dome  cannot  have  been 
less  than  the  half  diameter  of  the  building,  or  34  feet  2^ 
inches,  the  original  height  of  the  solid  brick-work  or  this 
stupa  must  have  been  72  feet  10  inches,  and  the  whole 
height  of  the  stupa  with  its  pinnacle  not  less  than  from  80 
to  90  feet,  or  including  the  ruined  basement  on  which  it 
stands,  not  less  than  150  feet  above  the  ground,  f 

Prom  the  ruined  state  of  the  lower  mound,  compared 
with  the  perfect  state  of  the  base  of  the  upper  stupa,  I am 

* Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1835,  Plate  VII. 

t See  Plate  XXIII.  for  a plan  of  the  ruins  of  Kesariya  ; and  Plate  XXIV.  for  a view 
of  the  stupa. 

A.  Cunningham  del: 

lAtho.  at  the  Survr.  Genl’s.  Office.  Cal.  August  1371 



of  opinion  that  the  present  stupa  is  of  middle  age,  say  from 
A.  D.  200  to  700,  and  that  it  was  built  upon  the  ruined  mass 
of  a much  older  and  much  larger  stupa.  That  such  a 
practice  was  not  uncommon,  we  learn  from  Hwen  Thsang, 
who  describes  two  stupas  at  Vaisali  as  having  been  erected 
on  ancient  foundations.  I feel  quite  satisfied  that  such  has 
been  the  case  with  the  Kesariya  Monument,  and  as  all  the 
early  stupas  are  found  to  be  hemispherical,  I infer  that  the 
lower  and  earlier  stupa  must  have  been  of  that  form.  Its 
great  size  may  he  deduced  from  the  breadth  of  the  base  of 
the  upper  stupa,  namely,  68  feet  5 inches,  at  a height  of  62 
feet  above  the  ground ; and  as  there  must  have  been  a clear 
terrace  all  round  this  stupa,  for  the  perambulation  of  pil- 
grims, the  actual  thickness  of  the  early  stupa  at  this  height 
cannot  have  been  much  less  than  100  feet,  which  would  give 
a diameter  at  base  of  160  feet.  The  height  of  the  hemis- 
phere would,  of  course,  have  been  80  feet,  hut  with  the  usual 
square  Buddhist  capital  surrounded  by  an  umbrella,  or  other 
pinnacle,  the  stupa  could  not  have  been  less  than  100  feet. 

This  ancient  monument  is  known  to  the  people  as  Raja, 
Ben  ka  Dedra.  The  similar  hut  smaller  stupa  at  Kasiya  is 
also  called  a.  Dedra,  or,  as  it  is  written  by  Buchanan,  Dewhara. 
In  both  cases  the  name  belongs  to  the  upper  stupa,  and  not 
to  the  whole  mass,  as  all  mounds,  whether  of  earth  or  brick, 
in  this  part  of  the  country,  are  named  Bhisa.  Deoriya, 
which  is  a very  common  village  name  in  the  districts  of 
Tirhut,  Champaran,  and  Gorakhpur,  is  applied,  I believe, 
only  to  such  places  as  possess  either  a temple  or  some  other 
holy  buildings.  Of  Raja  Ben  the  people  have  no  tradition, 
except  that  he  was  one  of  the  five  Supreme  Emperors  of 
India,  and  he  is,  therefore,  called  Raja  Ben  Chakravartti. 
The  piece  of  water  immediately  to  the  south  of  the  stupa  is 
also  named  after  him,  Raja  Ben  ka  Digha , or  Baja  Ben’s 
Tank.  I know  only  of  one  Baja  Vena,  whom  the  Bisliis  are 
said  to  have  inaugurated  as  “ Monarch  of  the  Earth,”  but 
whom  they  afterwards  slew,  because  he  would  not  allow  them 
to  worship  Vishnu — “ Who,”  exclaimed  he,  “is  this  Hari 
whom  you  style  the  lord  of  sacrifice  ?”  Erom  Vena’s  right 
arm,  when  rubbed  by  Brahmans,  was  produced  a son  named 
Prithu,  who,  according  to  the  Vislmu  Purana,  also  become  a 
Chakravartti  Raja.  This  Vena  Chakravartti  is  most  pro- 
bably the  great  Baja  Ben  to  whom  the  tradition  refers. 



Now  it  is  remarkable  that,  according  to  tlie  account  of 
Hwen  Tlisang,  this  stupa  was  also  referred  to  a Chakravartti 
Raja  by  the  Buddhists  of  the  7th  century.  He  states  that 
at  somewhat  less  than  200  li  (that  is,  less  than  33  miles,  or 
say  about  30  miles)  to  the  north-west  of  Vaisali,  which  is 
the  exact  position  of  the  Kesariya  stupa,  there  was  an  ancient 
town  which  had  been  deserted  for  many  ages.  It  possessed  a 
stupa  built  over  the  spot  where  Buddha  had  announced  that 
in  one  of  his  former  existences  he  had  been  a Bodhisatwa, 
and  had  reigned  over  that  town  as  a Chakravartti  Raja, 
named  Mahacleva*  It  can  hardly,  I think,  be  doubted  that 
the  tradition  of  Raja  Ben  preserves  the  very  same  story  which 
is  recorded  by  Hwen  Tlisang.  That  the  stupa  was  intended 
to  commemorate  a Chakravartti  Raja  might  also  have  been 
inferred  from  its  position  at  the  meeting  of  four  principal 
roads.  “ For  a Chakravartti  Raja,”  said  Buddha  addressing 
Ananda,  “ they  build  the  thupo  at  a spot  where  four  princi- 
pal roads  meet.”  Now  to  the  south  of  Kesariya,  within 
one-quarter  of  a mile  of  the  stupa,  the  two  great  thorough- 
fares of  the  district  cross  each  other,  namely,  that  from  Patna 
northward  to  Bettiah,  and  that  from  Cliapra  across  the  Gan- 
dak,  north-eastwards  to  Nepal. 

On  the  east  side  of  the  Kesariya  stupa  a gallery  has  been 
excavated  right  to  the  centre  of  the  building*.  This  is  said 
to  have  been  done  upwards  of  40  years  ago  by  one  Kasi  Nath 
Babu,  the  servant  of  a Colouel  Salieb.  As  the  name  of 
“ Lieutenant-Colonel  Mackenzie,  Madras  Engineers,  1814,”  is 
inscribed  on  the  Bakhra  Pillar,  I think  it  probable  that  the 
excavation  was  made  by  his  orders.  No  discovery  was  made, 
and,  if  I am  right  in  my  identification  of  this  stupa  with  that 
which  was  erected  on  the  spot  where  Buddha  announced  his 
previous  existence  as  a Chakravartti  Raja,  it  is  almost  certain 
that  it  would  not  have  been  the  depository  of  relics  or  of 
other  objects.  The  monument  was,  in  fact,  only  a memorial 
stupa,  erected  to  perpetuate  the  fame  of  one  of  Buddha’s 
acts,  and  not  a sepulchral  stupa  for  the  reception  of  relics. 

To  the  north  north-east  of  the  stupa,  and  rather  less 
than  half  a mile  distant,  there  is  a small  mound  which  has 
been  partially  excavated  to  furnish  materials  for  the  bridges 
on  the  high  road,  which,  within  the  last  few  years,  have  been 

* Julien’s  Hwen  Tlisang,  II.,  396. 

Hate  XXIV. 


made  from  Baklira  to  Motikari  via  Kesariya.  The  excavations 
have  disclosed  the  walls  of  a small  temple,  10  feet  square 
inside,  and  the  head  and  shoulders  of  colossal  figure  of  Bud- 
dha, with  the  usual  crisp  curly  hair.  The  mound,  which  is 
about  200  feet  square,  is  called  Haniwas,  and  also  Gorai,  and 
the  buildings  are  attributed  to  some  ancient  Bani.  It  ap- 
pears to  me  to  have  been  the  site  of  a Vihara  or  Temple 
Monastery,  as  portions  of  cells  are  still  traceable  on  the 
eastern  side.  At  the  south-west  angle  there  is  another 
smaller  mound  of  brick  ruin,  120  feet  from  north  to  south 
and  60  feet  from  west  to  east.  It  is  probably  the  ruin  of  a 


Between  Kesariya  and  Bettiah,  at  a distance  of  20  miles 
to  the  north-west  of  the  Kesariya  stupa,  and  one  mile  to  the 
south-west  of  the  Hindu  temple  of  Ara-Baj  Makadeo,  there 
stands  a lofty  stone  column  which  bears  in  well-preserved 
and  well-cut  letters  several  of  the  edicts  of  KingAsoka.  The 
pillar  itself  is  simply  called  Laur , that  is,  “ the  phallus and 
the  neighbouring  village,  which  lies  not  more  than  100  yards  to 
the  westward,  is  called  Laariya.  This  is  the  pillar  which,  on 
the  authority  of  Mr.  Hodgson,  has  been  called  the  Badhia 
Pillar.  Now,  as  the  other  pillar  to  the  north  of  Bettiah  is 
also  called  Laur,  and  the  large  village  close  to  it  Lauriya , 
while  Mr.  Hodgson  has  named  it  Mathiah,  I presume  that 
his  Munshi  intentionally  suppressed  the  phallic  name  of 
Lauriya , and  named  the  two  pillars  at  random  after  some  of 
the  neighbouring  villages.  Thus  Bakariva  (Burheea  of 
Indian  Atlas  Sheet  No.  102),  which  is  Mr.  Hodgson’s  Badhia, 
lies  2^  miles  to  the  west  north-west  of  the  southern  pillar, 
while  Mathiah  lies  3 miles  due  south  from  the  northern  pillar. 
In  describing  these  pillars  I will  preserve  the  characteristic 
name  of  Lauriya,  and  for  the  sake  of  distinguishing  the  one 
from  the  other,  I will  add  to  each  the  name  of  the  nearest 
village,  thus  the  village  near  the  southern  pillar  I shall  call 
Lauriya  Ara-Haj,  and  that  near  the  northern  pillar  Lauriya 

The  Ara-Baj  Pillar  is  a single  block  of  polished  sand- 
stone, 36^  feet  in  height  above  the  ground,  with  a base  dia- 
meter of  41-8  inches,  and  a top  diameter  of  37'G  inches. 
The  weight  of  this  portion  onty  is  very  nearly  34  tons,  but 


as  there  must  he  several  feet  of  rough  shaft  sunk  in  the 
earth,  the  actual  weight  of  the  single  block  must  he  about 
40  tons.  This  pillar  has  no  capital,  although  there  can  he 
little,  if  any,  doubt  that  it  must  once  have  been  crowned 
with  a statue  of  some  animal.  The  people,  however,  know 
nothing  of  it,  and  not  a fragment  of  any  kind  now  exists 
to  suggest  what  it  may  have  been.  The  site  of  the  village  is 
a very  secluded  one,  and  there  are  no  ruins  or  other  remains 
to  attract  attention.  It  has  accordingly  escaped  the  notice 
of  travellers,  and  the  disfigurement  of  their  names — the  only 
record  being  that  of  “ Iteuben  Burrow,  1792,”  besides  a few 
flourished  letters,  or  marks,  of  the  kind  which  James  Prinsep 
called  shell-shaped  characters. 

The  edicts  of  Asoka  are  most  clearly  and  neatly  en- 
graved, and  are  divided  into  two  distinct  portions, — tliat'to  the 
north  containing  18  lines,  and  that  to  the  south  23  lines.  I 
made  a copy  of  the  inscription  by  the  eye,  which  I then 
compared  with  James  Prinsep’s  text,  and  afterwards  I re- 
examined every  letter  in  which  our  copies  differed.  I also 
made  an  inked  impression  of  the  whole  inscription  on  paper. 
But,  though  the  variations  from  Prinsep’s  text  are  not  many, 
yet,  as  no  facsimile  has  yet  been  made  public,  it  is  important, 
for  the  sake  of  comparison,  to  afford  access  to  one  which  has 
been  carefully  copied  in  every  letter. 


The  lion  pillar  of  Lauriya  Navandgarh,  which  after  Mr. 
Hodgson  has  hitherto  been  called  the  Mathiah  Pillar,  is 
situated  at  rather  less  than  half  a mile  to  the  north-east  of 
the  large  village  of  Lauriya,  at  15  miles  to  the  north  north- 
west of  Bettiah,  and  at  10  miles  from  the  nearest  point  of  the 
Gandak  Biver.  As  Mr.  Hodgson’s  name  of  Mathiah  serves 
only  to  mislead,  I propose  to  call  the  site  of  this  pillar 
Lauriya  Navandgarh,  by  adding  the  name  of  a very  remark- 
able deserted  fort  which  stands  just  half  a mile  to  the  south- 
west of  Lauriya.  The  village  of  Mathiah  lies  no  less  than  3 
miles  to  the  south  of  the  pillar,  and  is  besides  both  smaller 
and  of  less  consequence  than  Lauriya.  The  name  of  this 
Lauriya  is  printed  in  Homan  letters  in  the  Indian  Atlas  Sheet 
No.  102,  and  even  the  “ stone  pillar”  itself  is  inserted  in  its 
proper  place  to  the  north-east  of  the  village.  The  deserted 



fort  of  Navandgarh  is  omitted,  but  it  will  be  found  in  the 
Calcutta  Map,  on  the  8-mile  scale,  as  Naonad-garli.  The 
mound  is  from  250  to  300  feet  square  at  top,  and  80  feet  in 
height.  On  account  of  its  height  it  was  chosen  as  one  of  the 
stations  of  the  Trigonometrical  Survey,  and  for  the  same 
reason  it  commands  a most  extensive  and  beautiful  view  of 
the  well-wooded  country  around  it.*' 

The  remains  at  Lauriya  Navandgarh  are  particularly  in- 
teresting, as  they  are  very  extensive,  and  at  the  same  time 
quite  different  in  character  from  any  others  that  I have  exa- 
mined. These  remains  consist  of  three  rows  of  eartliern 
barrows  or  huge  conical  mounds  of  earth,  of  which  two  of  the 
rows  lie  from  north  to  south,  and  the  third  from  west  to  east. 
The  stupas  hitherto  met  with  have  been  made  either  of  stone 
or  of  brick ; but  the  earliest  stupas  were  mere  mounds  of 
earth,  of  which  these  are  the  only  specimens  that  I have 
seen.  I believe  that  they  are  the  sepulchral  mounds  of  the 
early  kings  of  the  country,  prior  to  the  rise  and  spread  of 
Buddhism,  and  that  their  date  may,  therefore,  be  assumed  as 
ranging  from  about  600  to  1500  B.  C.  The  word  stupa 
meant  originally  only  “ a mound  of  earth,”  and  this  is  the 
rendering  given  to  the  word  by  Colebrooke  in  his  transla- 
tion of  the  Amarakosha.  In  the  time  of  Asoka  all  the 
stupas  were  certainly  built  either  of  stone  or  brick,  as 
recorded  by  Hwen  Tlisang  ; and,  although  he  is  silent  regard- 
ing the  material  of  the  earlier  stupas  of  Ajatasatra  and  other 
contemporaries  of  Buddha,  yet,  as  he  makes  no  mention  any- 
where of  earthen  stupas,  I presume  that  all  the  Buddhist 
monuments  were  either  of  brick  or  stone.  The  earthen 
barrows  I would,  therefore,  refer  to  an  earlier  period,  as  the 
stupas  or  sepulchral  mounds  raised  over  the  ashes  of  the 
rulers  of  the  country,  the  larger  mounds  belonging,  perhaps, 
to  the  greater  or  more  famous  monarchs  who  had  assumed 
the  title  of  Chalcravartti  Bajas.  Every  mound  is  called 
simply  BMsci,  and  the  whole  are  said  to  have  been  the  forti- 
fied residences  of  the  ministers  and  nobles  of  Baja  TJttanpat , 
while  the  Eort  of  Navandgarh  was  the  Baja’s  own  residence. 
Uttdncipdda , King  of  Brahmavarta  or  Bharatkhand,  that  is, 
of  the  Gangetic  Boab,  was  the  son  of  the  Manu  Swayam- 
bhuva , the  first-created  of  Brahma,  and  the  progenitor  of 

* See  Plate  XXIII.  for  a plan  of  these  ruins,  and  Plate  XXV.  for  a view. 



mankind.  Raja  Vena,  to  wbom  the  Kesariya  Monument  is 
assigned,  was  the  seventh  in  descent  from  TJttanapada. 
Another  decisive  evidence  in  favour  of  the  great  antiquity  of 
these  harrows  is  the  fact  that  Major  Pearse,  of  the  Madras 
Artillery,  found  one  of  the  small  punch-marked  silver  coins 
in  his  excavations  amongst  them,  These  coins  are  certainly 
anterior  to  the  time  of  Alexander  the  Great,  and  I believe 
that  many  of  them  are  as  old  as  1000  B.  C.,  and,  perhaps, 
even  older. 

There  are  three  rows  of  these  earthen  mounds,  of  which 
one  line  runs  from  east  to  west,  and  the  other  two  lines  from 
north  to  south.  There  are  five  barrows  in  the  east  and  west 
row  and  six  barrows  in  the  inner  north  and  south  row,  while 
the  outer  north  and  south  row  has  four  large  and  at  least 
seven  small  barrows.*  There  are  probably  several  more  small 
mounds  which  escaped  my  observation  in  the  jungle  sur- 
rounding some  of  the  larger  mounds,  but  I do  not  believe 
that  any  barrow  of  greater  height  than  5 or  6 feet  remains 
unnoticed.  In  my  survey  of  these  remains  I have  attached 
a separate  letter  of  the  alphabet  to  each  mound  for  the  sake 
of  greater  clearness  of  description. 

In  the  east  and  west  line  there  are  five  mounds  marked 
A.  to  E.  Pour  of  these  mounds,  A.,  C.,  D.,  and  E.,  are  covered 
with  fragments  of  brick,  and  there  are  also  traces  of  the  walls 
of  small  brick  buildings  on  their  summits.  Mound  A.  is  20 
feet  in  height.  Within  5 feet  of  its  top,  I excavated  a 
portion  of  a circular  foundation  wall,  16  inches  thick,  formed 
of  single  bricks  20-|  inches  long  and  4 inches  thick.  There 
were  only  four  courses  of  bricks  resting  on  the  earth  of  the 
mound.  This  work  may  either  have  been  the  retaining  wall 
of  a circular  terrace  which  once  crowned  the  top  of  the 
mound,  or  it  may  have  been  the  foundation  of  a tower ; but 

* See  Plate  XXIV.  for  a view  of  tliese  earthen  mounds  and  of  the  Lion-pillar.  The 
following  extracts  from  the  Bengal  Administration  Report  for  18G8-69  show  the  nature  of 
the  discoveries  to  be  expected  in  these  mounds.  The  excavations  were  made  on  my  re- 
commendation : 

“Para.  273. — “ At  Lowrya,  15  miles  north-west  of  Bettiah,  there  is  one  of  Asoka’s  edict 
or  boundary  pillars.  It  is  of  granite,  40  feet  high  and  9 feet  in  circumference  at  base. 
It  has  an  entablature  at  top  surmounted  by  a lion  couchant.  A short  time  ago,  close  by  it, 
were  found  some  leaden  coffins  containing  unusually  long  human  skeletons.” 

A second  paragraph,  perhaps,  refers  to  a different  discovery,  hut  I suspect  it  must 
be  the  same  described  by  a different  person. 

“ Some  tumuli  have  been  discovered  in  the  Bettiah  sub-division,  from  one  of  which 
two  iron  coins  were  obtained,  aud  from  another  an  iron  coffin  9 feet  or  so  in  length  ; in 
this  were  human  hones.  The  coffin  was  greatly  corroded,  aud  fell  to  pieces.” 



as  the  wall  was  only  1G  inches  thick,  the  former  Avould  seem 
to  he  the  more  probable  supposition.  Mound  B.  is  a simple 
earthen  harrow,  25  feet  in  height.  Mound  C.,  which  is  30 
feet  in  height,  is  thickly  covered  with  broken  brick.  There 
are  traces  of  foundation  Avails  on  the  top,  hut  a former  exca- 
Aration  shows  that  the  whole  mass  is  plain  earth.  There  arc 
traces  also  of  walls  on  the  slopes  of  the  mound ; and  in  an 
excavation  amongst  these  superficial  brick  ruins  made  by  Mr. 
Lynch,  Deputy  Magistrate  of  Motilifiri,  there  was  found  a seal 
of  black  earthen- ware,  bearing  a short  inscription  in  characters 
of  the  Gupta  period,  that  is,  of  the  2nd  and  3rd  century  after 
Christ.  The  inscription,  which  consists  of  four  letters,  reads 
Atavijd.  This  is  most  probably  only  a name  which  may 
mean  either  Atavi  + ja,  “ the  forest  born,”  or  less  probably 
Ata  + vija,  “the  cause  of  motion.”  At  the  end  of  the 
name  there  is  the  Swastika,  or  mystic  cross,  and  over  the 
name  in  the  middle  there  is  the  symbol  of  Dharmma,  and 
to  the  left,  in  a slanting  direction,  a trident,  or  trisdl.  The 
discovery  of  this  seal  shows  that  Navandgarli  Lauriya  was 
certainly  occupied  by  the  Buddhists  as  late  as  the  2nd  or  3rd 
century  A.  D.  Doubtless  their  occupation  continued  to  a 
later  period ; for,  although  both  Ea-Hian  and  Hwen  Thsang 
make  no  allusion  to  it,  their  silence  is  easily  accounted  for 
by  the  fact  that  the  course  of  their  travels  did  not  take  either 
of  them  into  the  Bettiah  District.  The  tAvo  remaining  barrows 
of  this  row  are  somewhat  higher,  mound  D.  being  35  feet, 
and  E.  45  feet.  Both  of  them  are  covered  with  broken  brick. 
The  top  of  D.  had  already  been  opened,  and  I myself  made  an 
eYcavajion  on  the  top  of  mound  E.  Both  had  flat  tops,  as  if 
terraces 'had  once  existed  on  their  summits,  and  with  this 
impression  I began  my  excavation.  At  the  depth  of  4 feet 
all  trace  of  brick  disappeared,  the  mass  of  the  mound  being 
plain  earth.  The  bricks  were  large,  15"  x 9"  x 2-|." 

None  of  the  barrows  of  the  middle  line  have  any  traces 
of  brick  upon  them,  but  seem  to  be  made  of  plain  earth. 
They  are  all  covered  with  low  thorny  jungle.  The  most 
northerly  mound  of  this  line,  marked  H.,  is  25  feet  in  height ; 
the  next  mound,  marked  G.,  is  20  feet ; the  next  E.  is  50 
feet ; and  the  next  M.  is  55  feet.  The  last  two  are  the 
highest  of  all  the  barrows  at  Navandgarh  Lauriya.  The 
next  mound  N.  is  only  15  feet  high,  and  the  next  southerly 
mound,  marked  Q.,  is  25  feet  in  height.  About  one-half  of 


the  mass  of  tlic  last  mound  lias  been  excavated  and  carried 
away  to  Bcttiak  on  bullocks  and  donkeys.  The  whole  heart 
of  the  mound  is  formed  of  an  extremely  hard  whitish  clay, 
which  is  used  by  the  people  as  a light  coloured  clay-wash  for 
the  walls  of  their  houses.  This  clay  is,  indeed,  so  hard  that 
it  turns  the  edges  of  common  digging  tools.  When  freshly 
cut,  it  glistens,  and  has  a bluish  tint.  Prom  whence  was 
this  clay  obtained  ? There  is  none  now  anywhere  near  the 
place,  the  soil  being  generally  light  and  sandy.  Can  it  have 
been  found  here  formerly,  or  was  it  brought  from  a distance  ? 

In  the  outer  line  there  are  only  four  large  barrows,  the 
most  northerly,  marked  L.,  being  20  feet  in  height,  and  the 
other  three,  marked  K.,  J.,  and  R.,  being  each  30  feet.  The  last 
mound  R.,  which  is  the  most  southerly  of  this  line,  has  also 
been  excavated  for  the  sake  of  its  stiff  white  clay,  which  is 
similar  to  that  of  mound  Q.  of  the  middle  line.  Between  J. 
and  R.  I traced  seven  small  mounds,  of  which  the  largest, 
marked  O.,  is  only  8^  feet  in  height.  I made  an  opening  in 
this  mound  down  to  the  ground  level,  but  without  any  result, 
except  that  it  proved  the  mound  to  be  formed  of  common  hard 
earth,  and  not  of  the  indurated  glistening  white  clay,  which 
forms  the  masses  of  the  two  barrows  Q.  and  R. 

There  is  another  question  regarding  these  barrows  which 
is,  perhaps,  quite  as  puzzling  as  that  of  their  origin,  namely, 
from  whence  was  the  earth  for  so  many  large  mounds  pro- 
cured, for  there  is  not  a single  hollow  or  excavation  of  any 
kind  in  their  neighbourhood  ? On  three  sides  of  the  huge 
mound  of  Navandgarh  the  tanks  still  exist  to  show 
whence  its  material  was  obtained,  but  with  respect  to  the 
material  for  the  tumuli  we  are  left  entirely  to  conjecture. 
Between  the  mounds  and  the  village  of  Lauriya  there  is  the 
dry  bed  of  an  annual  flood  stream  called  the  Tarhdha  Ndla, 
but  its  soil  is  light  and  sandy,  excepting  only  in  the  deeper 
pools,  where  the  water  lies  for  several  months.  It  seems 
scarcely  possible  that  the  earth  could  have  been  taken  from 
this  sandy  channel,  and  yet  it  is  equally  impossible  to  say 
from  what  other  place  it  could  have  been  obtained. 

The  lion  pillar  of  Lauriya  Navandgarh  stands  to  the 
north  of  the  mounds  A.  and  B.,  at  a distance  of  less  than  500 
feet  from  each.  Its  shaft  is  formed  of  a single  block  of 
polished  stand-stone,  32  feet  9^  inches  in  height,  with  a dia- 



meter  at  base  of  35‘5  inches  and  of  26’2  inches  at  top.  The 
capital,  which  is  6 feet  10  inches  in  height,  is  hell-shaped, 
with  a circular  abacus  supporting  the  statue  of  a lion  facing 
the  north.*  The  abacus  is  ornamented  with  a row  of 
Brahmani  geese  pecking  their  food.  The  column  has  a light 
and  elegant  appearance,  and  is  altogether  a much  more  pleas- 
ing monument  than  the  stouter  and  shorter  pillar  of  Bakhra. 
The  lion  has  been  injured  in  the  mouth,  and  the  column  itself 
bears  the  round  mark  of  a cannon  shot  just  below  the 
capital,  which  has  itself  been  slightly  dislodged  by  the  shock. 
One  has  not  far  to  seek  for  the  name  of  the  probable  author 
of  this  mischief.  By  the  people  the  outrage  is  ascribed 
to  the  Musalmans,  and  on  the  pillar  itself,  in  beauti- 
fully cut  Persian  characters,  is  inscribed  the  name  of 
Mahi-ud-din  Muhammad  Aurangzib  Padshah  Alamgir  Gliazi , 
Sanh,  1071.  This  date  corresponds  with  A.  D.  1660-61, 
which  was  the  fourth  year  of  the  reign  of  the  bigotted  Aurang- 
zib, and  the  record  may  probably  have  been  inscribed  by 
some  zealous  follower  in  Mir  Jumla’s  Army,  which  was 
then  on  its  return  from  Bengal,  after  the  death  of  the 
Emperor’s  brother  Shuja.  The  Navandgarh  Pillar  is  much 
thinner  and  much  lighter  than  those  of  Ara-Raj  and  Bakhra. 
The  weight  of  the  polished  portion  of  its  shaft  is  only  18  tons, 
or  rather  less  than  half  that  of  the  Bakhra  Pillar,  and  some- 
what more  than  half  that  of  the  Ara-Raj  Pillar. 

The  pillar  is  inscribed  with  the  edicts  of  Asoka  in  the 
same  clear  and  beautifully  cut  characters  as  those  of  the 
"Ara  E^ij  Pillar.  The  two  inscriptions,  with  only  a few  trifling 
variations,  correspond  letter  for  letter.  I made  a careful  copy 
of  the  whole  for  comparison  with  the  text  made  public  by 
James  Prinsep.  I made  also  a facsimile  impression  in  ink. 

The  Navandgarh  Pillar  has  been  visited  by  numerous 
travellers,  as  it  stands  in  the  direct  route  from  Bettiah  to 
Nepal.  There  are  a few  unimportant  inscriptions  in  modem 
Nagari,  the  oldest  being  dated  in  Samvat  1566,  chait  hadi  10, 
equivalent  to  A.  D.  1509.  One  of  them,  without  date,  refers 
to  some  petty  Royal  Eamily,  Nripa  IS!  ar  ay  ana  Suta,  Nripa 
Amara  Singha,  that  is,  “King  Amara  Singha,  the  son  of 
King  Narayana.”  The  only  English  inscription  is  the  name 
of  Pin.  Burrow , 1792. 

* See  Plate  XXII,  for  a view  of  this  pillar. 




The  pillar  itself  lias  now  become  an  object  of  worship  as 
a phallus  or  lingam.  Whilst  I was  copying  the  inscription, 
a man  with  two  women  and  a child  set  up  a small  flag  before 
the  pillar,  and  placed  offerings  of  sweetmeats  around  it. 
They  then  all  knelt  before  it,  bowing  down  their  heads  to 
the  ground  with  their  hands  behind  their  backs,  and  repeating 
some  prayer.  The  erection  of  the  pillar  is  ascribed  to  Raja 
B/iim  Mari , one  of  the  five  Pandava  brothers  to  whom  most 
of  the  pillars  in  India  are  now  ascribed.  I could  not  learn 
anything  regarding  the  title  of  Mari.  There  are  two  fine 
Banian  trees  close  to  the  pillar, — one  to  the  north,  and  the 
other  to  the  south ; — but  there  are  no  traces  of  buildings  of 
anv  kind  near  it. 


The  large  village  of  Badaraona,  or  Badaravcma,  is  situ- 
ated 12  miles  to  the  west  of  the  River  Gandak,  27  miles  in  a 
direct  line  to  the  north  north-west  of  Navandgarli  Lauriva, 
and  40  miles  to  the  north  north-east  of  Gorakhpur.  I be- 
lieve that  it  is  the  ancient  Bawd,  as  it  is  situated  just  12 
miles  from  Kasia,  which  agrees  with  the  position  assigned  to 
Bawd  in  the  Pali  Annals  with  respect  to  Kusinagara.  The 
very  name  of  Bawd  also  seems  to  be  only  a corruption  of 
Badara-vana,  or  Badar-ban,  which  might  easily  be  shortened 
to  Barban , Bdwan , and  Bawd. 

The  remains  at  Padaraona  consist  of  a large  mound 
covered  with  broken  brick  and  a few  statues.  The  ms'anu 
is  220  feet  in  length  from  west  to  east,  120  feet  im  breadth 
from  north  to  south,  and  14  feet  in  height  at  the  western 
end  above  the  fields.  The  long  trench  mentioned  by  Bucha- 
nan still  exists  on  the  west  side,  and  looks  as  if  a wall  had 
"been  dug  out  for  the  sake  of  the  bricks.  About  eight  years 
ago  a large  hole  was  excavated  to  the  east  of  the  trench  by 
a zemindar  for  the  sake  of  bricks.  Two  houses  were  built  of 
the  materials  then  obtained,  but  sufficient  trace  of  the  walls 
still  remains  to  show  that  they  were  in  straight  lines,  one  of 
them  being  paralled  .to  Buchanan’s  trench.  Prom  this  I 
infer  that  there  was  a court-yard  about  100  feet  square,  with 
cells  on  each  side  for  the  accommodation  of  monks.  In  the 
centre  there  was  probably  either  a stupa  or  a temple.  But 
if  I am  right  in  my  identification  of  Padaraona  with  Bawd , 


h»  tm' 


tlie  building  would  almost  certainly  have  been  a stupa ; for 
we  know  that  the  people  of  Pawa,  after  the  cremation  of 
Buddha’s  body,  obtained  one-eiglith  of  the  relics,  over  which 
they  erected  a stupa.  The  entrance  to  the  court-yard  would 
appear  to  have  been  on  the  east  side,  where  the  mound  is 
now  low  and  thickly  covered  with  bricks. 

In  a small  roofless  brick  building  at  a short  distance  to 
the  northward,  there  are  a few  old  figures.  This  temple  is 
dedicated  to  Hatlii  Bhawani,  or  the  Elephant  Goddess,  who 
is  accordingly  propitiated  with  rude  votive  figures  of  ele- 
phants in  baked  clay,  of  which  numbers  lie  scattered  about 
the  temple,  both  inside  and  outside.  The  statue  called 
Hatlii  Bhawani  represents  a squatted  male  figure  with  a 
triple  umbrella  over  his  head.  The  figure  appears  to  he 
naked,  and  if  so,  it  must  belong  to  the  Jains,  and  not  to  the 
Buddhists.  A drawing  of  it  is  given  by  Buchanan.*  There  are 
also  two  fragments  with  seated  Buddhas,  and  a third  with  the 
upper  half  of  a female  figure.  On  referring  to  Buchanan  I 
recognized  all  three  fragments  as  having  belonged  to  the  statue 
sketched  as  fig.  2 in  his  plate.  The  principal  figure  is  now 
gone,  hut  there  are  a few  unimportant  fragments  not  noticed 
by  Buchanan,  and  in  the  village  there  is  the  pedestal  of  a 

I made  an  excavation  on  the  highest  part  of  the  mound 
on  the  west  side,  and  to  the  northward  of  the  zemindar’s 
excavation.  In  this  I found  bricks  with  rounded  edges  such 
■-ac  I had  noticed  in  the  mouldings  of  the  Great  Temple  at 
Buddfi8,-Gya,  and  of  the  stupa  at  Giryek.  I found  also 
wedge-shaped  bricks  of  two  sizes.  The  largest  ones  being 
only  fragments,  I was  unable  to  ascertain  their  length,  but 
their  breadth  was  20f  at  the  end,  and  19J  inches  at  G inches 
distance.  As  the  larger  end  was  rounded,  these  bricks  must 
have  formed  part  of  some  circular  building  and  most  pro- 
bably of  a solid  stupa,  which  would  have  been  just  30  feet  in 
diameter.  The  smaller  bricks  were  8^  inches  long  5 ^ inches 
broad  at  the  widest  end,  and  5 inches  at  the  narrow  end,  with 
a thickness  of  2J  inches.  These  may  have  belonged  to  a 
small  stupa  about  9 feet  in  diameter.  In  my  excavation  I 
found  also  the  base  of  a pillar  of  coarse  grey  sandstone.  It 
was  15  inches  square  and  6^  inches  high,  with  a few  plain 

* Eastern  India,  II.,  Plate  I.,  Fig.  2. 



mouldings  at  the  upper  edge.  The  complete  excavation  of 
this  mound  would  not  be  difficult,  and  the  work  might  he 
superintended  by  the  civil  authorities  of  the  place,  who  live 
close  by. 


The  village  of  Kasta  is  situated  at  the  crossing  of  two 
great  thoroughfares,  at  a distance  of  35  miles  due  east  from 
Gorakhpur.  The  name  is  written  Kasia,  with  the  short  a 
in  the  first  syllable ; but  I have  little  doubt  that  it  should 
be  written  Kusta  with  the  short  u , for  the  place  corresponds, 
both  in  position  and  in  name,  with  the  celebrated  Kusinagara 
or  “Town  of  the  Kusa-grass,”  which,  as  the  scene  of 
Buddha’s  death,  was  famous  throughout  India.  This  sacred 
spot  was  visited  both  by  Ta-Hian  and  by  Hwen  Thsang; 
and  the  latter  has  left  a detailed  account  of  the  various 
stupas  which  still  existed  in  his  time.  Most  of  these  have 
now  disappeared,  owing  partly  to  the  removal  of  bricks  by 
the  people,  but  chiefly,  I believe,  to  the  inundations  of  the 
Little  Gandak  Liver,  which  at  some  former  period  must  have 
flowed  close  by  the  sacred  buildings  of  Kusinagara , as  there 
are  several  old  channels  between  the  two  principal  masses 
of  ruins,  which  are  still  occasionally  filled  during  the  rainy 

The  existing  remains  have  already  been  described  by 
Buchanan*  and  by  Mr.  Liston  ;f  but  their  accounts  are  very 
brief,  and  offer  no  attempt  to  identify  the  ruins  with  any  of 
the  ancient  cities  which  are  known  to  have  existed  in  this 
part  of  the  country.  The  remains  consist  of — 1st,  a-dufty 
mound  of  solid  brick-work  called  Devistltdn  and  Rdrndbhdr 
Bhaicdni ; 2nd,  an  oblong  mound  called  the  Port  of  Matlia 
Kudr,  which  is  covered  with  broken  brick  and  jungle, 
and  on  which  stands  a brick  stupa  much  ruined ; 2>rd-,  a large 
statue  of  Buddha  the  Ascetic ; 1th,  a low  square  mound 
covered  with  broken  brick  near  the  'village  of  Anrudhiod ; 
and  5 th,  a number  of  low  earthern  mounds,  like  barrows, 
which  are  scattered  over  the  plain  to  the  north  and  east  of  the 
great  mound  4 

* Eastern  India,  II.,  p.  357. 

f Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1837,  p.  477. 

+ See  Plate  XXVI.  for  a Map  of  Kasia.  1 opened  several  of  these  barrows,  but  with- 
out any  result.  I believe  now  that  I did  not  dig  deep  enough.  That  they  are  tombs  I feel 
quite  certain,  as  Megasthenes  describes  the  Indian  “sepulchres  as  plain,  and  the  tumuli  of 
earth  low.”  Strabo.,  XV.,  I.  54. 



The  mound  called  Devisthdn  and  Bdmdblidr  Ttla  is  the 
ruin  of  a large  ancient  stupa  of  solid  brick-work,  which  is 
still  49  feet  in  height  above  the  fields.  It  is  situated  some- 
what less  than  one  mile  to  the  south-west  of  Kasia.  On  the 
top,  under  a fine  old  Banian  Tree,  is  the  shrine  of  the  goddess 
Devi.  There  is  neither  statue  nor  building,  hut  only  some 
votive  figures  in  baked  clay,  the  offerings  of  the  poor  people 
to  their  favourite  Devi.  The  goddess  is  also  called  Mdmdbhdr 
Bliaivdni,  because  the  mound  is  situated  on  the  western  bank 
of  the  . Rdmabhar  Jlnl,  a large  natural  sheet  of  water,  which 
forms  part  of  the  bed  of  the  Roha  Ndla,  one  of  the  old  channels 
of  the  Little  Gandak.  As  the  mound  is  also  called  Kamabhar 
Tila,  it  is  possible  that  this  name  may  have  originally  belonged 
to  the  stupa.  I attempted  to  make  an  excavation  at  the  top 
of  the  mound,  but  the  large  interlaced  roots  of  the  Banian 
Tree  soon  forced  me  to  give  up  the  work.  At  the  south- 
eastern foot  of  the  mound  I discovered  a portion  of  a small 
stupa  formed  of  very  large  bricks,  averaging  5 inches  in 
thickness.  These  bricks  were  17^  inches  in  length  and  wedge- 
shaped,  being  8-|  inches  broad  at  one  end,  and  only  7 inches 
at  the  other  end.  These  dimensions  would  give  a diameter 
of  only  16^  feet  to  the  stupa. 

The  large  mound  called  Mcitlid- Knar- ka-kot,  or  the 
“ Port  of  Matha-Kuar,”  is  600  feet  in  length  from  north- 
west to  south-east,  and  from  200  to  300  feet  in  breadth.  At 
its  highest  point,  which  is  30  feet  3 inches  iu  height  above 
the  plain,  the  mound  is  formed  entirely  of  solid  brick-work, 
"which  I believe  to  be  the  remains  of  a very  ancient  stupa. 
On  this  'point  stands  a solid  tower  of  brick- work  with  sides 
much  ruined,  and  its  top  covered  with  long  grass.  This  is 
undoubtedly  a stupa,  and  from  its  position  it  must  be  of  much 
later  date  than  the  ancient  mass  of  brick-work  on  which  it 
stands.  I conclude  that  it  is  a work  of  middle  age,  or  between 
A.  D.  200  and  600.  At  present  the  mass  of  the  tower  is  only 
24  feet  thick,  but  by  clearing  away  the  rubbish,  I measured 
a circumference  of  86  feet,  which  gives  a diameter  of  nearly 
27^  feet.  The  present  height  of  the  lower  portion  is  only  15 
feet,  and  that  of  the  grass-covered  top,  12  feet  9 inches,  the 
whole  being  27  feet  9 inches  above  the  ancient  foundation, 
and  58  feet  above  the  plain.  But  as  the  original  height  of 
this  later  work  was  most  probably  equal  to  two  diameters,  or 
55  feet,  the  whole  height  of  the  stupa  above  the  plain  would 
have  been  85  feet.  I drove  a horizontal  gallery  into  the 



centre  of  tlie  building  at  its  base  without  making  any  dis- 
covery. I confess  that  I did  not  expect  to  find  anything,  as, 
I believe,  that  whatever  relics  may  have  been  deposited  on 
this  spot,  they  would  have  been  placed  in  the  more  ancient 
stupa  below,  which  forms  the  foundation  of  the  present 
monument.  There  is  a fine  Pipal  Tree  close  to  this  stupa.* 

The  mound  called  the  Tort  of  Matlia  Kuar  is  situated 
nearly  1,600  yards  to  the  north  north-west  of  the  ruined  stupa 
called  Ramabliar.  Buchanan  gives  the  distance  as  400  yards, 
which  is  most  probably  a misprint  for  1,400  yards.  My  dis- 
tance was  measured  from  centre  to  centre ; if  taken  from  foot 
to  foot,  the  distance  would  be  a little  over  1,400  yards.  This 
mound  Avould  seem  to  have  been  formed  of  the  ruin  of  two 
large  buildings  and  of  several  small  ones.  The  site  of  one  of 
the  larger  ones  has  just  been  described  ; that  of  the  other  is 
to  the  north-westward,  the  summit  of  the  mound  at  this 
point,  which  is  crowned  by  a large  Pipal  Tree,  being  20  feet 
in  height  above  the  plain.  To  the  east  of  the  stupa  there  is 
also  a small  detached  mound,  16  feet  3 inches  in  height.  I 
made  an  excavation  in  the  top  of  this  mound,  which  I aban- 
doned after  reaching  a depth  of  4 feet  3 inches,  as  I found 
only  broken  bricks  mixed  with  earth.  Both  to  the  north  and 
south  of  the  stupa  there  are  low  mounds,  which  are  probably 
the  remains  of  small  detached  t owners  or  other  buildings.  The 
top  of  the  large  mound  is  in  most  parts  thickly  covered  with 
bricks,  but  towards  the  north-west  end,  where  the  elevation 
is  low,  there  are  some  rather  large  spaces  quite  clear  of 
bricks,  which  may  be  supposed  to  represent  the  court-y?Ms, 
or  vacant  spots  between  the  buildings.  I noticed  many 
wedge-shaped  bricks,  which  must  have  belonged  to  stupas  of 
small  size,  besides  several  bricks  with  one-half  face  bevelled 
like  those  in  the  mouldings  of  the  Great  Temple  at  Buddha- 
Gaya  and  of  Jarasandlia’s  Tower  at  Giryek.  I was  unable  to 
trace  any  straight  lines  of  surrounding  Avails,  and,  from  the 
irregular  outline  of  the  mound,  1 incline  to  belieA^e  that  it 
has  been  formed  by  the  ruin  of  a considerable  number  of 
independent  buildings,  such  as  a cluster  of  stupas  of  all  sizes. 
Trom  the  total  absence  of  statues,  I infer  that  there  were 
probably  but  few  temples  on  this  site. 

The  large  statue  known  as  that  of  Matlia  Kuar,  or  the 
cc  Dead  Prince,”  is  uoav  lying  on  the  ground  at  a distance  of 

* See  Plate  XXA'II.  for  a view  of  these  ruins. 

. Cunilillgbfl*n,  del.  Ph.otodncogcapb.ed.  at  the  Surveyor  General’a  Office  Calcutta 




1,100  feet  from  tlie  brick  stupa  above  described.  Quite  close 
beside  it,  to  the  eastward,  there  is  a low  square  mound  which 
I believe  to  be  the  remains  of  a temple  in  which  the  image 
was  formerly  enshrined.  The  statue  which  is  made  of  the 
dark  blue  stone  of  Gaya,  is  split  into  two  pieces  from  top 
to  bottom,  and  is  otherwise  much  injured.  The  short  inscrip- 
tion on  its  pedestal  has  been  almost  worn  out  by  the  villagers 
in  sharpening  their  tools,  hut  the  few  letters  which  remain  are 
sufficient  to  show  that  the  statue  is  not  of  older  date  than  the 
11th  or  12th  century.  The  figure  itself  is  colossal,  and 
represents  Buddha  the  Ascetic  seated  under  the  Bodhi  Tree  at 
Budha-Gaya.  The  whole  sculpture  is  10-J  feet  in  height  by 
4f  feet  in  breadth.  The  height  of  the  figure  alone  is  5 feet  44- 
inches,  the  breadth  across  the  shoulders  being  3 feet  8-^- 
inches,  and  across  the  knees  4 feet  5 inches.  A sketch  of 
this  sculpture  is  given  hv  Buchanan.'* 

Between  the  Port  of  Mdthd  Kudr  and  the  great  stupa 
on  the  Bdmdbhdr  JliU,  there  is  a low  mound  of  brick  ruins 
about  500  feet  square,  which  is  said  to  have  been  a hot  or 
fort,  and  to  which  no  name  is  given ; hut  as  it  lies  close  to 
the  village  of  Anrudhwa  on  the  north-west,  it  may  he  called 
the  Anrudhwa  mound.  There  is  nothing  now  left  to  show 
the  nature  of  the  buildings  which  once  stood  on  this  site ; 
hut  from  the  square  shape  of  the  ruins,  it  may  he  conjec- 
tured with  some  probability  that  they  must  be  the  remains  of 
a monastery.  There  are  three  fine  Pipal  Trees  now  standing 
on  the  mound. 

To\tlie  north  and  east  of  the  mound  of  Matha  Knar  the 
plain  is  covered  with  a number  of  low  grassy  mounds  from 
3 to  6 feet  in  height,  and  from  12  to  25  feet  in  diameter. 
Be  gar  ding  these  barrows  the  people  have  a tradition  that 
gypsys  were  formerly  very  numerous  about  Kasia,  and  that 
these  mounds  are  the  tumuli  of  their  dead.  I opened  three 
of  them,  hut  without  making  any  discovery.  They  were  all 
formed  of  plain  earth,  without  any  trace  of  bones,  or  ashes, 
or  broken  bricks.  The  people  call  them  simply  mounds,  but 
I was  informed  by  an  old  man  that  he  had  heard  them  styled 
Blumdwdt,  and  that  ghosts  were  sometimes  seen  flitting 
about  them.  If  the  name  of  Blumdwdt  has  any  reference 
to  these  ghosts,  it  might,  perhaps,  he  translated  as  the  “fear- 

* Eastern  India,  II.,  Plate  II. 



some  place but  I cannot  be  certain  of  the  spelling,  and  it 
is  also  possible  that  the  old  man  may  not  have  remembered 
the  name  correctly.  I counted  21  of  these  mounds,  but  as 
they  are  generally  not  more  than  3 or  4 feet  in  height,  it  is 
probable  that  their  actual  number  is  much  greater.* 

I have  already  stated  that  the  site  of  Kasia  corre- 
sponds both  in  position  and  in  name  with  the  ancient  city 
of  Kusinagara,  which  was  famous  throughout  India  as  the 
scene  of  Buddha’s  death.  According  to  Hwen  Thsang, 
Kusinagara  was  situated  at  700  li , or  116  miles  to  the  north- 
east of  Benares.  Now  Kasia  is  112  miles  to  the  north 
north-east  of  Benares  in  direct  line.  Fa-Hian  also  places 
Kusinagara  at  a distance  of  23  yojans  to  the  north-west  of 
a place  which  was  situated  only  8 or  10  miles  to  the  north 
of  Vaisali,  where  the  Lichchhavi  Nobles  had  taken  a last  fare- 
well of  Buddha.  At  7 miles  to  the  yojan  Fa-Hain’s  measure- 
ment would  place  Kusinagara  at  148  or  150  miles  to  the 
north-west  of  Vaisali.  Now  the  distance  by  the  route  which 
I marched  is  exactly  140  miles  in  a north-west  direction, 
but  as  this  measurement  was  taken  along  the  straight  lines 
of  road  which  have  been  laid  out  by  the  British  authorities, 
the  actual  distance  by  the  old  winding  Native  roads  must 
certainly  have  been  somewhat  greater,  or  as  nearly  possible 
150  miles. 

The  only  name  now  associated  with  the  ruins  near 
Kasia  is  that  of  Matha  Kudr,  or  the  “ Dead  Prince .” 
Mr.  Liston  gives  the  name  as  Mata , but  a Brahman  of  the- 
neighbouring  village  of  Bishanpur,  who  wrote  the  name 
for  me,  spelt  it  as  I have  given  it,  Mdthd.  As  this  spelling 
points  to  the  derivation  of  the  word  from  Mdthd , or  Mdthd, 

“ to  kill,”  I have  translated  Mdthd  Kudr  as  the  “ Dead 
Prince,”  which  I refer  to  Buddha  himself  after  his  death,  or, 
in  the  language  of  the  Buddhists,  after  his  obtainment  of 
Nirvana.  Hwen  Thsang,  when  speaking  of  Sakya's  as- 
sumption of  the  mendicant’s  dress,  calls  him  Kumdra  Raja, 
or  the  “ Royal  Prince;”  but,  although  this  title  was  never,  I 
believe,  applied  to  him  by  the  learned  after  his  assumption  of 
Buddhahood,  it  does  not  seem  at  all  improbable  that  it  may 
have  remained  in  common  use  amongst  the  people.  We 

* See  a previous  note  at  p.  76,  quoting  the  description  of  ilegastlienes,  that  the 
Indian  tumuli  were  “ low  mounds  of  earth,” 



know  from  Hwen  Tlisang  tliat  on  the  spot  where  Buddha 
died  there  was  a brick  vihdr  or  temple  monastery  in  which 
was  enshrined  a recumbent  statue  of  Buddha  on  his  death- 
bed, with  his  head  turned  to  the  north.  Now  this  statue 
would  naturally  have  been  the  principal  object  of  veneration 
at  Kusinagara  ; and,  although  amongst  the  learned  it  might 
have  been  called  the  “ statue  of  the  Nirvana”  yet  I can 
readily  believe  that  its  more  popular  name  amongst  all  classes 
would  have  been  the  “statue  of  the  Dead  Prince.”  Iam, 
therefore,  of  opinion  that  the  name  of  Mdtha  Knar,  which 
still  clings  to  the  ruins  of  Kasia,  has  a direct  reference  to  the 
death  of  Buddha,  which,  according  to  his  followers,  took  place 
at  Kusinagara  on  the  full  moon  of  Yaisakh,  5-13  B.  C. 

Owing  to  the  wanderings  of  the  Little  Gandak  Elver, 
it  is  somewhat  difficult  to  follow  Hwen  Thsang’s  account  of 
the  sacred  edifices  at  Kusinagara.  The  whole  of  the  existing 
remains  are  situated  to  the  eastward  of  the  Khanua  Nala, 
which  is  only  a branch  or  inundation  channel  of  the  Little 
Gandak  Biver.  All  the  old  channels  are  called  Chawar ; 
the  Lambuha  Chawar , running  between  the  two  ancient 
stupas,  and  the  Koha  Chawar,  or  Eolia  Nala,  to  the  east  of 
the  Bamabhar  Tila.  An  intelligent  man,  whom  I met  at 
Padraona,  called  the  stream  to  the  westward  of  Kasia  the 
Kir  ana,  hut  the  people  in  the  villages  about  the  ruin  knew 
only  the  Klianiia  Nala,  and  had  never  heard  of  the  Kirana. 
Buchanan,  however,  calls  the  Kirana  a considerable  rivulet 
which  has  a course  of  about  15  miles,  and  makes  it  a feeder 
of  the  .Little  Gandak;*  but  there  is  some  confusion  in  his 
description  of  this  river.  The  changes  of  name  would,  how- 
ever, appear  to  have  been  as  numerous  as  the  changes  of 
channel ; for,  in  the  time  of  Hwen  Tlisang,  this  stream  was 
called  the  Ajitavati,  its  more  ancient  name  having  been 
Kiranyavati,  while  the  present  name  is  Chota  Ganclah,  and 
the  eastern  inundation  branch  is  called  Khanua.  There  is 
now  no  trace  of  Hwen  Thsang’s  Ajitavati,  but  the  name  of 
Kiranyavati  is  still  preserved  in  the  Hirana  of  my  Padraona 

At  the  time  of  Hwen  Thsang’s  visit,  the  walls  of  Ku- 
sinagara were  in  ruins,  and  the  place  was  almost  deserted; 
but  the  brick  foundations  of  the  old  Capital  occupied  a 

* Eastern  India,  IT.,  p.  31t>. 




circuit  of  about  12  li,  that  is,  of  about  two  miles.  After  a long 
and  attentive  comparison  of  all  our  available  information,  I 
have  come  to  the  conclusion  that  the  famous  city  of  Kusina- 
gara  must  have  occupied  the  site  of  the  mound  and  village 
of  Anrudlrwa.  The  ruined  mound,  which  is  about  500 
feet  square,  I would  identify  as  the  site  of  the  Palace 
of  the  Mallian  Kings,  which  was  in  the  midst  of  the  city, 
and  to  the  city  itself  I would  assign  an  extent  of  about 
1,000  feet  on  all  sides  of  the  palace.  This  would  give  a 
square  area  of  2,500  feet,  or  nearly  half  a mile  on  each  side, 
with  a circuit  of  10,000  feet,  or  nearly  2 miles,  as  recorded 
by  Hwen  Thsang.  I will  now  compare  the  existing  remains 
with  the  account  of  the  Chinese  pilgrim,  and  with  the  details 
given  in  the  Pali  Annals  of  Ceylon,  as  translated  by  Tumour. 

The  spot  where  Buddha  died  is  fixed  by  Hwen  Thsang 
at  3 or  1 li,  or  rather  more  than  half  a mile,  to  the  north-west 
of  the  city,  in  a forest  of  sal  trees,  at  a short  distance  from 
the  western  bank  of  the  Ajitavati  Biver.  The  distance  and 
direction  correspond  exactly  with  the  site  of  the  great  mound 
now  called  the  Port  of  Mdtlid  Kuar.  On  this  spot  was  erect- 
ed a great  brick  vihar  or  temple  monastery,  in  which  was 
enshrined  a statue  of  Buddha  in  a recumbent  posture  as  he 
appeared  when  about  to  enter  Nirvana.  This  vihar  I would 
identify  with  the  extensive  mass  of  ruin  marked  K.  in  my 
survey  of  the  site  at  the  western  end  of  the  mound.  Beside 
the  vihar  there  was  a stupa,  200  feet  in  height,  built  by 
Asoka,  and  a stone  pillar,  on  which  was  recorded  the  history 
of  the  Nirvana,  or  death  of  Buddha.  This  stupa  I would 
identify  with  the  foundation  or  lower  part  of  the  brick  tower 
marked  A.,  now  standing  on  the  mound,  and  of  which  an 
account  has  already  been  given.  Hwen  Thsang  describes 
two  smaller  stupas,  and  then  a third  grand  stupa  which 
stood  on  the  spot  where  Brahman  Subhadra  had  entered  into 
Nirvana  * As  the  whole  of  the  buildings  above  described  as 
well  as  three  small  stupas  were  clustered  together  around  the 
spot  where  Buddha  was  said  to  have  died,  their  ruins,  in  the 
lapse  of  ages,  would  naturally  have  formed  a single  large 
mound  of  irregular  outline,  in  all  respects  similar  to  the 
mass  of  ruins  now  called  Mathd-Kuar-ka-kot.  I think,  there- 
fore, that  no  reasonable  doubt  can  now  remain  against  the 
identification  of  Kasia  with  the  ancient  Kusinagara.  With 

Tliis  lust  I would  identify  with  the  high  point  in  the  centre  of  the  mound  marked  B. 



regard  to  tlie  slight  difference  of  name,  I have  already  stated 
my  belief  that  the  name  of  the  present  village  should  in  all 
probability  be  written  Kiista  instead  of  Kastci,  and  in  favour 
of  this  spelling  I may  add  that  the  name  is  variously  spelt 
in  the  Buddhist  Books  as  Kusigrdmaka , Kusindra,  Kusvnd- 
gara , and  Kusinagari. 

After  the  death  of  Buddha,  the  assembled  Bhikshus  (or 
mendicants)  were  consoled  by  the  Venerable  Aniruddha,  who 
assured  them  that  he  saw  the  Devatas  looking  down  from 
the  skies  upon  earth,  and  weeping  and  bewailing  with 
dishevelled  hair  and  up-lifted  arms.*  Aniruddha  was  the  first 
cousin  of  Buddha,  being  the  second  son  of  Amitodana,  one 
of  the  brothers  of  Suddhodana,  the  father  of  Sakya  Sinka. 
He  was  one  of  the  ten  great  disciples  of  his  cousin,  and  was 
renowned  for  his  penetrating  sight.  Accordingly,  on  the 
death  of  Buddha,  he  took  the  lead  of  all  the  disciples  present, 
and  conducted  their  proceedings.  By  his  directions  Ananda 
made  known  the  death  of  Buddha  to  the  Mallian  Nobles,  who 
at  once  proceeded  to  the  spot  with  garlands  of  flowers,  and 
numerous  cloths  and  music.  Bor  six  days  the  body  lay  in 
state,  attended  by  the  people  of  Kusinara.  On  the  seventh 
day,  when  eight  of  the  Mallian  Nobles,  who  had  been  select- 
ed to  carry  the  corpse  to  the  place  of  cremation,  attempted  to 
lift  it,  they  found  themselves  unable  to  move  it.  The  amazed 
Nobles,  on  enquiring  of  the  Venerable  Aniruddha  the 
cause  of  this  prodigy,  were  informed  that  their  intention  of 
carrying  the  corpse  through  the  southern  gate  to  the  south  of 
the  city  was  contrary  to  the  intention  of  the  Devatas.  “ Lord,” 
said  the  Mallian  Nobles,  “ whatever  be  the  intention  of  the 
Devatas,  be  it  acceded  to.”  Accordingly,  the  corpse  was  borne 
by  the  eight  Mallian  Chieftains,  on  a bier  formed  of  their  lances, 
through  the  northern  gate  to  the  centre  of  the  town,  and  then 
through  the  eastern  gate  to  the  coronation  hall  of  the  Mallians, 
where  the  funeral  pile  had  been  prepared.  Pour  N oble  Mallians 
then  advanced  and  applied  their  torches  to  the  funeral  pile, 
but  they  were  unable  to  ignite  it.  Again  the  baffled  Nobles 
inquired  of  Aniruddha  the  cause  of  this  second  prodigy, 
who  informed  them  that  it  was  the  intention  of  the 
Devatas  that  the  corpse  should  not  be  burnt  until  the  arrival 
of  Maha  Kasyapa,  the  chief  disciple  of  Buddha.  At  that 

* Tumour  in  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1838,  p.  1009. 



moment  Kasyapa  was  on  liis  way  from  Ttiwd  to  Kusindra.  On 
liis  arrival  he  perambulated  the  pile  three  times,  and  then 
opening  it  at  the  end,  he  reverentially  bowed  down  his  head 
at  the  feet  of  Buddha.  As  he  rose,  the  pile  spontaneously 
ignited,  and  the  corpse  of  the  great  teacher  was  consumed. 

I have  given  this  long  account  of  the  obsequies  of 
Buddha  for  the  express  purpose  of  showing  the  very  promi- 
nent part  that  was  taken  by  Aniruddha  in  all  the  proceed- 
ings. He  first  consoled  the  disciples  on  the  death  of  Buddha ; 
he  then  explained  the  causes  of  the  miracles  why  the  Mal- 
lian  N obles  were  unable  at  first  to  lift  the  corpse  of  Buddha, 
and  afterwards  to  ignite  the  funeral  pile ; and  lastly,  accord- 
ing to  Hwen  Thsang,  he  ascended  to  the  heavens  to  inform 
Maya  Devi,  the  mother  of  Buddha,  of  her  son’s  death.  As  the 
whole  of  these  acts  were  performed  at  Kusinara,  we  might 
not  unreasonably  suppose  that  some  memorial  monument  of 
Aniruddha  would  have  been  erected  there.  There  is,  how- 
ever, no  record  of  such  a monument  in  Hwen  Thsang’s  ac- 
count of  the  sacred  edifices  at  Kusinagara ; hut  I think  it 
more  than  probable  that  the  village  of  Anrudhwa  must  have 
received  its  name  from  some  former  memorial  of  the  far- 
sighted Aniruddha,  the  cousin  of  Buddha.  In  Sheet  102  of 
the  Indian  Atlas  the  name  of  this  village  is  spelt  Aniroodwa, 
which  is  more  correct  than  the  name  written  down  for  me 
by  a Brahman  of  the  place.  The  existence  of  this  name  in 
the  immediate  vicinity  of  the  ancient  monuments  of  Kusm 
must,  I think,  add  considerable  weight  to  all  the  other  evi- 
dence in  favour  of  the  identification  of  Kusia  with  the  ancient 

There  is  a discrepancy  between  the  Ceylonese  annals 
and  the  accounts  of  the  Chinese  pilgrim  regarding  the  site 
of  Buddha’s  cremation.  According  to  the  Pali  annals  above 
quoted,  the  corpse  must  have  been  burnt  somewhere  to  the 
eastward  of  the  city,  and  with  this  account  Pa-Hian  would 
seem  to  agree,  for  he  places  the  scene  of  Buddha’s  death  to 
the  northward  of  the  town.  Hwen  Thsang,  however,  places 
the  site  of  the  cremation  to  the  northward  of  the  city,  across 
the  Biver  Hiranyavati.  I think  that  these  different  accounts 
may,  perhaps,  be  reconciled  by  identifying  the  stupa  of  the 
cremation  with  the  large  brick  mound  called  the  lldmdbhdr 
Tila , which  being  situated  opposite  to  the  north-east  corner 
of  the  Anrudhwa  mound  (or  ancient  city  as  I suppose),  might 

vta u xycvta 



of  th.e  Buin«  nX> 




■>.  n 


1.  in  pit 

' YonhaUthl 

- Sahaj^ar- 

A.  Statue  of  Vishnu. 

B.  Siva-ka-Tila. 

(J.  Lingam  Temple. 

J).  Various  Statues. 

E.  (excavated) 

E.  Statue  of  Vishnu 
G.  H.  L.  M.  Small  mounds 

J.  Statue  of  Vishnu. 

K.  Largest  mound. 

N.  Lingam  Temple. 

O.  P.  ft.  XJ.  Small  mounds 
Q.  T.  Y.  Low  mounds. 

S.  Jug  Bhira  mound. 

V.  IV.  A'.  Low  Mounds. 

Z.  (excavated)  2 Stupa. 

fcirwa ' Tab 

s c i si*,  if  * *** 

JhakrahL  - G-u 



of  the  TUmi*  at 

Tureno  - 


- GriO 

S.  OX  Fts* 


the  Surrr.  Genl’s.  Office.  Cal.  October  1371 

A.Ounwngham  »*«•!  Litho.  at 



Lave  been  loosely  described  by  one  party  as  lying  to  tbe 
north,  and  by  the  other  as  lying  to  the  east. 

But  the  Bamabhar  Tila,  perhaps,  corresponds  more  exact- 
ly with  the  site  of  another  stupa,  which  is  described  by  Hwen 
Thsang  as  having  been  built  by  Asoka  near  the  ancient 
dwelling  of  Chanda,  to  the  nortli-east  of  the  city  gates.  This 
account,  however,  is  somewhat  vague,  as  no  particular  gate  is 
specified.  The  existence  also  of  a second  stupa  at  the  south- 
east foot  of  the  Jldmdblidr  Tila  is  against  this  identification, 
as  only  one  stupa  is  mentioned  on  this  site  by  Hwen  Thsang. 
I am,  therefore,  strongly  inclined  to  identify  the  Tdmabhdr  Tila 
with  the  famous  cremation  stupa  ; but  if  this  position  should 
be  considered  too  far  to  the  eastward  to  agree  with  Hwen 
Thsang’s  description,  then  the  cremation  tower  must  have 
occupied  some  position  to  the  north  of  the  Anrudhwa  mound 
in  the  very  midst  of  the  ancient  channel  of  the  little  Gandak 
Biver.  I confess,  however,  that  my  own  opinion  is  against 
this  conclusion,  and  in  favor  of  the  identification  of  the 
Bamabhar  Tila  with  the  cremation  stupa. 


On  leaving  Kusinagara  Hwen  Thsang  directed  his  steps 
towards  Banaras,  and,  after  having  travelled  about  200  li, 
or  upwards  of  30  miles,  to  the  south-west,  he  reached  a large 
town,  in  which  dwelt  a very  rich  Brahman  devoted  to 
Buddhism.*  If  we  adhere  closely  to  the  south-west  bearing, 
we  must  identify  this  large  town  with  Budrapur,  an  ancient 
place  30  miles  to  the  south-east  of  Gorakhpur,  and  28  miles 
in  a direct  line  from  Kasia.  But  as  Hwen  Thsang  speaks 
of  the  Brahman’s  hospitality  to  travellers  going  and  coming, 
it  would  appear  certaiu  that  the  town  must  have  been  on  the 
high  road  leading  from  Kasia  to  Banaras.  Now  the  high 
road  can  never  have  passed  through  Budrapur,  as  it  would 
have  entailed  the  passage  of  the  llapti  in  addition  to  that 
of  the  Ghagra  Biver.  I have  had  some  experience  in  the 
laying  out  of  roads,  and  I feel  quite  satisfied  that  the  old 
high  road  must  have  crossed  the  Ghagra  somewhere  below 
its  junction  with  the  Bapti.  According  to  the  people,  the 
old  passage  of  the  Ghagra  was  at  Maili,  four  miles  to  the  south 
of  Kahaon,  and  three  miles  to  the  north  of  Bhagalpur.  Broni 

* Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  p.  349, 



Kasia  to  tins  ghat  on  the  Ghagra,  the  road  would  have 
passed  through  the  ancient  town  of  Kliukhundo,  and  the 
large  villages  of  Kahaon  and  BMgalpur.  Of  these  three, 
Kliukhundo  corresponds  best  with  the  description  of  a large 
town;  and  as  it  is  27  miles  from  Kasia  by  the  present  straight 
road,  it  must  have  been  about  30  miles  by  the  winding 
Native  tracks.  I believe,  therefore,  that  it  is  the  large  town 
described  by  Hwen  Thsang  in  which  a rich  Brahman  had 
spent  his  wealth  in  the  magnificent  decoration  of  a Buddhist 
monastery.  Kliukhundo  is  not  now  a place  of  any  note 
amongst  the  Brahmans,  hut  it  is  often  visited  by  Agarwal 
Srawaks  from  Gorakhpur  and  Patna,  who  have  built  a small 
Jain  temple  amongst  the  ruins.  By  them  its  proper  name 
is  said  to  be  Kishkindapura,  so  called  from  Kishkinda , a 
mountain  in  the  south  of  India,  famous  in  the  history  of 
Kama.  Kliukhundo  must,  therefore,  have  been  a Brahmanical 

The  remains  at  Kliukhundo  consist  of  a few  large  tanks, 
and  a number  of  low  mounds  covered  with  broken  brick  and 
thick  jungle.  The  ruins  which  lie  scattered  about  over 
the  plain,  and  amongst  the  fields  to  the  south  of  Khukhundo, 
cover  nearly  one  square  mile  of  ground.  All  the  larger 
mounds  are  square  in  form,  and  are  beyond  all  doubt  the 
ruins  of  temples.  There  are  a few  low  oblong  heaps  which 
may  possibly  he  the  ruins  of  long  ranges  of  inferior  build- 
ings, but  I think  it  more  probable  that  they  are  only  the  col- 
lections of  brick  from  the  fields.  Every  large  mound  has 
at  least  one  fine  lofty  tree  growing  on  its  summit,  and  to  the 
destructive  power  of  the  roots  of  these  trees  I would  attri- 
bute the  overthrow  of  the  Khukhundo  temples.  I verified 
this  opinion  in  one  instance,  that  of  mound  K.,  by  an  excava- 
tion which  showed  the  floor  of  a temple  completely  broken 
up  by  the  wide-spreading  roots  of  a fine  Tamarind  tree. 
Another  notable  instance  is  that  of  a temple  at  Kahaon, 
which  was  standing  at  the  time  of  Buchanan’s  visit,  hut 
which  is  now  only  a low  mound  of  brick  ruin.  Its  over- 
throw is  attributed  by  all  the  villagers  to  a Pipal  tree,  which 
stands  close  by  the  ruin. 

The  mounds  of  Khukhundo  are  about  30  in  number,  hut 
not  more  than  three  of  them  have  any  names,  the  rest  being 
called  simply  Dcorci,  or  “ mounds.”  In  my  survey  of  the 



ruins  I have  distinguished  them  by  different  letters  of  the  al- 
phabet, and  under  these  letters  I w ill  now  describe  them.* 

Mound  A.  is  100  feet  square  at  base  and  6 feet  in  height. 
There  is  a Bel  tree  (iEglc  Marmelos)  on  the  top,  and  a Bdkar 
(Eicus  Venosa)  on  the  west  side.  Under  the  Bel  tree  there 
is  a good  figure  of  the  four-armed  Vishnu  in  sandstone,  with 
a peculiar  rayed  halo,  which  is  boldly  pierced  through  the 

Mound  B.,  which  is  50  feet  square  at  base  and  10  feet 
high,  is  called  Siva-ka-Tila  or  Siva’s  mound,  because  there 
are  the  foundations  of  a Ungam  temple  on  its  summit ; the 
temple  was  only  8 feet  square,  but  the  ling  am  in  blue  stone 
is  still  perfect.  There  is  one  good  piece  of  sculpture  repre- 
senting two  seated  figures,  male  and  female,  the  latter  with 
a child  in  her  arms.  A tree  rises  behind  them,  and  with  its 
branches  forms  a canopy  over  their  heads.  The  figures, 
which  appear  to  be  entirely  naked  with  the  exception  of 
some  ornaments,  are,  I believe,  Mahadeva  and  his  wife  Devi, 
or  Bhawani,  represented  as  the  goddess  of  fecundity,  with  a 
child  in  her  arms.  Another  sculpture  represents  a four- 
armed female  standing  in  what  appears  to  be  the  prow  of  a 
boat.  The  subordinate  figure  of  Gansea,  on  the  upper  right 
hand,  shows  that  the  principal  figure  must  be  Parvati,  the 
wife  of  Siva. 

Mound  C.  is  120  feet  in  length,  by  110  feet  in  breadth, 
and  15  feet  in  height.  On  the  top  there  are  the  ruined  walls 
of  a brick  temple,  from  4 to  5 feet  in  height,  forming  a room 
of  9 feet  square,  with  a lingam  in  the  centre.  To  the  south- 
west there  is  a walled  entrance  built  of  bricks  of  different 
sizes,  and  containing  one  piece  of  moulded  bricks  with  a 
flower  ornament.  The  small  size  of  the  room,  the  mixture  of 
large  and  small  bricks  in  the  walls,  and  the  unusual  direction 
of  the  entrance,  all  lead  me  to  conclude  that  this  is  an 
insignificant  modern  structure,  built  of  bricks  of  all  kinds 
found  on  the  surface  of  the  mound. 

On  both  sides  of  the  entrance  there  are  several  sculptures 
in  sandstone,  of  which  the  principal  is  a statue  of  Ganesa. 
The  other  sculptures  are  a broken  statue  of  Ganesa  with  his 
rat ; the  pedestal  of  a statue  with  a foot  resting  on  a bull ; 

# See  Plate  XXVIII.  for  a plan  of  these  ruins. 



a four-armed  female,  most  probably  Parvati,  attended  by  two 
heavenly  musicians ; and  a slab  containing  personifications 
of  the  Navcigraha,  or  “ Nine  Planets.” 

Mound  D.,  which  is  100  feet  square  at  base  and  15  feet 
in  height,  is  crowned  with  a fine  Banian  tree.  Beneath 
the  tree  are  collected  several  pieces  and  fragments  of  sculp- 
ture, which  are  partly  Brahmanical  and  partly  Jain.  The 
principal  sculpture  represents  a four-armed  seated  male 
figure,  with  beard  and  moustaches,  his  right  foot  resting  on 
a bull.  In  his  four  hands  he  holds  a two-pronged  sceptre, 
a necklace,  a ball,  and  square  pole.  This  is  probably  a figure 
of  Siva.  A second  statue  represents  the  four-armed  Yislmu 
standing,  and  holding  in  three  hands  a club,  a quoit,  and  a 
shell,  the  fourth  hand  being  open  with  a lotus  flower  marked 
on  the  palm.  A third  sclupture  is  the  pedestal  of  a statue 
with  some  naked  figures  on  the  face  of  it,  and  an  antelope 
in  the  middle.  The  antelope  is  the  cognizance  of  Santanath, 
the  lGth  Jain  hierarch.  A fourth  stone  is  simply  the  pedestal 
of  a lingam.  The  remaining  sculptures  are  two  pairs  of 
apparently  naked  figures,  male  and  female,  seated — the  latter 
with  a child  in  her  arms.  These  two  sculptures  are  similar 
to  one  in  the  Siva  Temple  on  mound  B.,  which  I have  sup- 
posed to  represent  Mahadeva  and  his  wife  Bhawani  as  the 
goddess  of  fecundity.  But  in  these  two  sculptures  the  god 
has  a small  naked  figure  of  Buddha  fixed  in  the  front  of  his 
head-dress,  from  which  I infer  that  these  figures  probably 
belong  to  the  Jain  religion,  while  that  on  mound  B.  certainly 
belongs  to  the  Brahmanical  Sliashti,  the  goddess  of  fecundity. 

Mound  E.  is  about  75  feet  square  and  15  or  16  feet  in 
height.  It  is  now  quite  bare,  the  whole  surface  having  been 
recently  excavated  for  bricks.  Any  figures  that  may  have 
been  discovered  were  probably  removed  to  Mound  D.,  which 
would  account  for  the  mixture  of  Saiva  and  Vishnava  sculp- 
tures now  lying  on  its  summit. 

Mound  E.  is  150  feet  in  length,  by  120  feet  in  breadh,  and 
IS  feet  in  height.  On  the  south  slope  of  the  mound  there 
is  a fine  statue  of  the  fore-armed  Vishnu  in  blue  stone 
from  the  quarries  near  Gaya. 

G.  and  H.  are  small  low  mounds  from  which  bricks  bave 
been  recently  excavated.  They  are  probably  the  remains  of 
inferior  temples. 



Mound  J.,  which  is  75  feet  square  at  base,  and  15  feet  in 
height,  has  also  been  recently  excavated.  I was  able  to  trace 
the  straight  walls  of  a temple,  and  in  the  excavated  holes  I 
found  large  thick  pieces  of  plaster,  which  had  once  covered  the 
walls.  There  are  no  sculptures  now  lying  about  this  mound, 
hut  immediately  to  the  south  of  it,  and  outside  a small  modern 
Jain  temple,  there  is  a very  fine  standing  figure  of  the  four- 
armed Vishnu  in  blue  stone.  The  head  and  arms  are  gone, 
hut  the  rest  of  the  sculpture  is  in  good  order.  On  the  left  side 
there  are  the  Fish,  the  Tortoise,  and  the  Boar  Avatars ; and 
on  the  right  the  Buddha  and  the  Kdlki  Avatars.  The  five 
missing  incarnations  must  have  been  lost  with  the  head  of  the 
figure.  This  fine  statue  was  probably  enshrined  in  a temple 
now  represented  by  mound  J. 

The  Jain  temple  is  a small  square  flat-roofed  brick  build- 
ing of  recent  date.  There  are  no  Jains  now  living  at  Khu- 
khundo,  hut  the  temple  is  visited  by  the  Baniyas  and  Bankers 
of  Gorakhpur  and  Patna.  Inside  the  temple  there  is  a large 
naked  figure  in  blue  stone,  sitting  squatted  with  his  hands  in 
his  lap.  Overhead  there  is  a triple  umbrella,  and  above  that 
a Dundubhi  Musician  flying  with  his  drum.  On  the  pedestal 
there  is  a hull  with  a lion  on  each  side.  Now  the  hull  is  the 
cognizance  of  Adi  Buddha,  the  first  of  the  24  Jain  Pontiffs. 
The  people  are,  therefore,  mistaken  in  calling  the  figure  a statue 
of  Tdrsivandth,  whose  well  known  symbol  is  a snake.*  Out- 
side the  temple,  however,  there  is  another  naked  Jain  statue 
which  has  two  snakes  twisted  around  its  pedestal,  and  is,  there- 
fore, most  probably  a figure  of  Prdswandth.  It  is  possible 
that  this  may  have  been  the  original  figure  enshrined  in 
the  temple.  Another  sculpture,  in  coarse  sand-stone,  repre- 
sents the  same  naked  couple,  male  and  female,  whom  I 
have  before  described.  A tree  rises  behind  them,  and  with 
its  boughs  forms  a canopy  over  their  heads.  Over  all  there 
is  a small  squatted  figure  like  a Buddha,  hut  naked.  The 
male  figure  in  this  sculpture  has  a lotus  in  his  right  hand. 

Mound  K.,  which  is  crowned  with  a fine  Tamarind  tree, 
is  the  largest  mass  of  ruin  at  Khukhundo.  It  is  120  feet 
square  at  base  and  16  feet  in  height.  At  10  feet  above  the 
ground  level  I made  an  excavation  at  a point  on  the  western 
edge,  where  I observed  something  like  a piece  of  terraced 
flooring.  My  excavation  uncovered  a portion  of  terraced 


archaeological  report,  1861-62. 

floor  9 feet  square,  but  completely  broken  up  by  the  wide- 
spreading  roots  of  the  Tamarind . Tree,  which  have  pierced 
the  mound  in  all  directions.  I found  several  ornamental 
bricks  with  boldly  cut-flowers  and  leaves  1^  inch  in  depth. 
Two  of  these  bricks,  with  opposite  curves  forming  an  ogee, 
had  evidently  belonged  to  a cornice.  The  outer  faces  of  all 
the  bricks  are  ground  smooth,  and  all  the  edges  are  so  sharp 
and  clean  that  the  joints  between  the  courses  of  bricks  must 
have  been  very  fine  indeed.  As  I saw  no  fragments  of 
figures  about  this  mound,  I think  it  is  very  probable  that  the 
statue  belonging  to  it  may  be  one  of  those  now  standing 
outside  the  Jain  temple. 

Mound  N.  is  low  and  clear  of  jungle,  having  been  exca- 
vated for  bricks  within  the  last  few  years.  It  is  45  feet 
square  at  base,  but  only  8 feet  high.  Prom  its  being  both 
low  and  clear  I thought  it  favourable  for  excavation.  I dug 
a circular  hole  of  about  8 feet  diameter  in  the  top  of  the 
mound,  and  near  the  middle,  at  a depth  of  only  1 foot  I came 
upon  a stone  Yoni,  or  receptacle  for  a ling  am,  fixed  in  its 
original  position,  with  the  spout  end  turned  towards  the 
north.  Further  excavation  showed  that  the  floor  had  been 
broken  up,  but  the  marks  of  the  original  floor  level  were 
quite  distinct  on  the  centre  stone.  As  there  were  no  traces 
of  any  figures,  I gave  up  the  excavation,  which  had  already 
been  sufficient  to  determine  that  the  mound  N.  is  the  ruin  of 
a ling  a temple,  dedicated  to  the  god  Mahadeva. 

Mound  S.  is  100  feet  in  length,  by  60  feet  in  breadth,  and 
12  feet  in  height  towards  its  western  end.  The  top  is  crowned 
with  two  fine  Siris  Trees,  under  which  there  is  a life-size 
standing  figure  in  stand-stone.  The  nose  and  forehead  have 
been  lost  by  a split  of  the  stone,  which  must  have  been  as 
old  as  the  figure  itself,  for  there  are  two  holes  in  the  split 
face  which  still  retain  bits  of  the  metal  clamps  that  were 
used  in  repairing  the  statue.  The  figure  has  apparently  had 
four  arms,  and  is  called  Jug -blur a,  or  Jug-vtra,  “ the  Champion 
of  the  Age,”  a title  which  might  be  applied  appropriately  to 
Vira,  or  Mahavira,  the  last  of  the  24th  J ain  hierarchs  and 
the  pontiff  of  the  present  age. 

Mound  Z.  is  a long  low  mass  of  ruin  to  the  south-  west  of 
Ivhukhundo,  half  hidden  admits  bambus.  I found  a recent 
excavation  at  the  western  end  of  the  mound,  from  which  the 



bricks  could  not  have  been  removed  above  a few  days,  as  the 
sides  of  tlie  excavated  hole  still  preserved  the  shape  of  the 
walls  exactly.  In  form  the  building  was  an  octagon  of  14 
feet  across,  with  projections  on  the  four  sides  facing  the 
cardinal  points.  On  the  north-east  side  a portion  of  solid 
brick-work  still  remained,  but  not  of  sufficient  thickness  to 
show  whether  the  building  had  been  solid  or  hollow.  As  far 
as  my  experience  goes,  the  only  buildings  of  this  shape  are 
Buddhist  stupas,  as  at  Dhamnar  and  Kholvi  in  Malwa,  or 
Baragaon  (or  Nalanda ) in  Bihar,  and  throughout  Pegu  and 
Burmah.  In  all  instances  the  four  projecting  sides  form 
niches  for  statues  of  the  previous  Buddhas.  In  the  gigantic 
Shwe-Dagon  stupa  at  Bangoon,  these  niches  are  expanded 
into  distinct  temples  enshrining  colossal  figures.  I incline, 
therefore,  to  conclude  that  the  building  recently  excavated  in 
mound  Z.  was  a Buddhist  stupa.  But  if  Brahmanical  temples 
of  this  form  have  ever  been  built,  I should  certainly  prefer 
to  consider  mound  Z.  as  the  ruin  of  another  orthodox  temple, 
and  to  add  one  more  to  the  long  list  of  Brahmanical  remains 
at  Khukhundo. 

With  the  exception  of  Baragaon  (the  ancient  Nalanda), 
I have  seen  no  place  where  the  ruins  offer  such  a promise  of 
valuable  discovery  as  at  Khukhundo.  The  mounds  are  all 
low,  and  as  they  appear  to  be  the  ruins  of  temples,  the  work 
of  excavation  would  be  comparatively  easy.  I think  that  it 
would  be  sufficient  to  remove  the  top  of  each  mound  down 
to  the  level  of  the  floor  of  the  building,  clearing  away  the 
rubbish  entirely,  but  leaving  the  walls  standing  to  show  the 
plan  of  the  building.  Amongst  the  rubbish  we  might  expect 
to  find  both  statues  and  inscriptions,  and  perhaps  other  objects, 
all  of  which  would  help  to  throw  light  on  the  rise  and  pro- 
gress of  modern  Brahmanism,  more  particularly  during  the 
long  period  of  its  struggles  with  expiring  Buddhism.* 


The  village  of  Kahaon  is  situated  eight  miles  to  the 
south  of  Khukhundo,  and  46  miles  to  the  south-east  of 
Gorakhpur  in  a direct  line.  To  the  north  of  the  village  there  is 
a stone  pillar,  and  also  some  other  remains,  which  have  been 

* As  far  as  I am  aware  nothing  has  yet  been  done  towards  the  excavation  of  these 



described  by  Dr.  Buchanan*  and  by  Mr.  Liston.  + Dr.Buclianan 
calls  the  village  Kangho,  but  the  name  is  written  Kahaon, 
or  Kahdwan,  by  the  people  of  the  place,  and  I can  only 
surmise  that  Buchanan’s  Kangho  may  have  been  originally 
written  Kanghon,  and  that  the  final  nasal  has  been  omitted 
by  mistake,  either  in  copying  or  in  printing.  In  the  inscrip- 
tion on  the  pillar  the  village  would  seem  to  be  called  Kaku- 
bharati ; and  from  some  compound  of  Kakubha,  such  as 
Kaknhhaican,  the  name  of  Kahdwan  would  be  naturally 

The  remains  at  Kahaon  consist  of  an  inscribed  stone 
pillar,  an  old  well,  two  ruined  temples,  and  several  tanks. 
The  whole  of  these,  together  with  the  village  itself,  are  situat- 
ed on  a low  but  extensive  mound  of  brick  ruin.  Although 
the  mound  is  of  rather  irregular  outline  on  the  east  side,  it 
may  be  best  described  as  a square  of  nearly  500  yards 4 The 
village  occupies  the  south-western  quarter  of  the  square,  and 
contains  some  fine  old  wells  built  of  very  large  bricks,  which 
are  a sure  sign  of  antiquity.  The  tanks,  which  would  seem  to 
have  been  connected  with  the  old  buildings,  are  all  called  gar , 
the  meaning  of  which  I was  unable  to  ascertain,  but  which, 
as  applied  to  water,  must  certainly  be  derived  from  the  Sans- 
krit gri,  to  wet.  These  tanks  are,  1st,  the  Tdurena-gar,  a 
dirty  pond  immediately  to  the  north  of  the  village ; 2nd,  the 
Karhahi-gar,  a small  deep  pond  at  the  north-west  angle  of 
the  ruins  ; 3rd,  the  Jhakralii-gar,  another  small  pond  at  the 
north-east  angle,  which  is  also  called  Sophd-gar ; and  4th,  a 
large  sheet  of  water  to  the  east  of  the  village  called  Askdmini, 
or  Akdskdmini-gar.  This  is  the  tank  which  Buchanan  calls 
Karhahi,  a misprint  probably  for  Kdmini.  Prom  the  size  and 
appearance  of  the  Askdmini  Tank,  I conclude  that  from  it 
must  have  been  excavated  all  the  bricks  and  earth  for  the  con- 
struction of  the  temples  and  village  of  Kahaon. 

The  Kahaon  Pillar  is  a single  block  of  coarse  grey  sand- 
stone, 24  feet  3 inches  in  height  from  the  ground  to  the 
metal  spike  on  the  top.  The  existence  of  this  spike  shows 
that  the  pillar  has  once  been  crowned  by  a pinnacle  of  some 
kind,  perhaps  by  a statue  of  a lion,  or  of  some  other  animal 

* Eastern  India,  II.,  p.  366. 
f Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1838,  p.  33. 
I See  Plate  XXVIII. 

Tiai*  XXIX 

A funnmghsm  iei  ■ 

Lith  Surv  Gen  ^ Office  Calcutta  June  1871 



rampant;  but  whatever  the  pinnacle  may  have  been,  its 
height  could  not  have  exceeded  2^  or  3 feet.  The  total  height 
of  the  column,  therefore,  must  have  been  about  27  feet.  The 
lower  part  of  the  shaft,  to  a height  of  4^  feet,  is  a square  of 
1 foot  10  inches ; above  this,  for  a height  of  6 feet  3 inches, 
it  is  octagonal ; then  sixteen-sided  for  a height  of  5 feet 
10^  inches  ; and  then  circular  for  a height  of  2 feet  1^  inch. 
Above  this,  for  a height  of  9 inches,  the  pillar  becomes 
square  with  a side  of  18  inches,  and  then  circular  again  for 
a height  of  4^  inches,  making  the  total  height  of  the  shaft 
19  feet  10^  inches.  The  height  of  the  capital,  in  its  present 
incomplete  state,  is  4 feet  4^  inches.  The  lower  portion, 
which  is  2^  feet  high,  is  bell-shaped,  with  circular  bands  of 
moulding  both  above  and  below.  The  bell  itself  is  reeded, 
after  the  fashion  of  the  Asoka  pillars.  Above  this  the  capital 
is  square,  with  a small  niche  on  each  side  holding  a naked 
standing  figure.  The  square  top  slopes  backward  on  all  sides, 
and  is  surmounted  by  a low  circular  band,  in  which  is  fixed 
the  metal  spike  already  described.* * * § 

On  the  western  face  of  the  square  base  there  is  a niche 
holding  a naked  standing  figure,  with  very  long  arms  reach- 
ing to  his  knees.  Behind,  there  is  a large  snake  folded  in 
horizontal  coils,  one  above  the  other,  and  with  its  seven  heads 
forming  a canopy  over  the  idol.  Two  small  figures,  male 
and  female,  are  kneeling  at  the  feet,  and  looking  up  to  the 
idol  with  offerings  in  their  hands. 

On  the  three  northern  faces  of  the  octagonal  portion  of 
the  pillar,  there  is  an  inscription  of  12  lines  in  the  Gupta 
characters  of  the  Allahabad  Pillar.f  There  is  a good  copy 
of  this  inscription  in  Buchanan,  J and  another  and  better 
copy  in  Prinsep’s  Journal.  § In  the  translation  given  by 
James  Prinsep,  the  date  was  read  as  being  133  years  after 
the  decease  of  Skanda  Gupta,  instead  of  in  the  year  133, 
after  the  death  of  Skanda.  The  true  number  of  the  year  is 
141,  as  pointed  out  by  Professor  BitzEdward  Hall,  but  the 
epoch  or  era  in  which  the  years  are  reckoned  is  doubtful. 
Professor  Hall,  on  the  authority  of  Bdpa  Deva  Sdstri,  the 

* See  Plate  XXIX. 

t See  Plate  XXX. 

t Eastern  India,  II.,  Plate  V. 

§ Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  18J8,  Plate  I. 



learned  Astronomer  of  the  Banaras  College  prefers  the  era  of 
Yikramdditya,  hut  I am  inclined  to  adopt  that  of  Sake  ; and 
this  era,  I believe,  is  also  preferred  by  Mr.  Thomas.  The 
difference  between  the  two  is  135  years.  If  dated  in  the 
Vikrama  era,  the  pillar  must  have  been  erected  in  141 — 57 
= 84  A.  I). ; but  if  dated  in  the  Sake  era,  the  period  of  its 
erection  will  be  141  + 78  = 219  A.  D.  The  latter  date,  I 
think,  accords  best  with  the  now  generally  admitted  epoch 
of  the  overthrow  of  the  Gupta  Dynasty  in  A.  D.  319. 

The  purport  of  the  inscription,  as  translated  by  Prinsep, 
is  simply  to  record  the  dedication  of  five  images  of  Indra  by 
one  Madra,  who  calls  himself  “ the  constant  and  friendly 
patron  of  Brahmans,  Gurus,  and  Yatis,”  or  Brahmans,  reli- 
gious teachers,  and  sages,”  or  Ascetics  who  have  subdued  their 
passions.  In  the  present  day  the  term  Yati  is,  I believe, 
applied  only  to  a Jain  Priest;  and,  although  at  first  the 
mention  of  Brahmans  would  seem  to  preclude  any  reference 
to  the  Jain  religion,  yet  the  Yatis  themselves  are  usually, 
if  not  always,  Brahmans,  and  the  naked  figures  with  crisp 
curled  hair,  on  the  base  and  capital  of  the  pillar,  must  be- 
long either  to  the  Jains,  or  to  the  latter  Tdntrika  Buddhists. 
I found  a similar  naked  standing  figure,  canopied  by  a seven- 
headed snake,  inside  the  great  mound  of  old  Baj agriha. 

Both  of  the  temples  described  by  Buchanan*  are  now 
in  ruins ; and  as  they  are  not  mentioned  by  Mr.  Liston  in 
1S37,  they  must  have  fallen  before  his  visit.  Buchanan 
describes  them  as  pyramidal  in  form,  with  two  apartments, 
one  over  the  other,  as  in  the  great  temple  at  Buddba-Gaya. 
Inside  he  found  only  two  fragments  of  images,  of  which 
one  showed  the  feet  of  a standing  figure  with  a female 
votary  seatednt  one  side.  I made  an  excavation  in  the  northern 
ruin,  and  found  that  the  temple  had  consisted  of  a room  9 feet 
square  with  walls  only  1 foot  9 inches  in  thickness.  The  build- 
ing, therefore,  was  only  12  feet  6 inches  square  on  the  outside. 
In  the  slight  sketch  of  this  temple  given  hy  Buchanan,  no 
dimensions  are  noted,  but  the  height  of  the  building  is  twice 
and  a half  its  width,  or  about  30  feet,  according  to  the  mea- 
surement obtained  by  my  excavation.  On  the  ruin  of  the 
southern  temple,  I found  a naked  standing  figure  of  life-size, 
similar  to  that  on  the  base  of  the  pillar. 

* Eastern  India,  II.,  p.  367. 

Plate  XXX. 

Inscription  on  the  Bhitan  Piliar. 

3 1 v x^r^tu^}.'®5^iXJRrE’® 

j jjp^gjw  ^TEf^T^  I©? 

| r ssJJhsi  § u]v ; 

6 l^ric7tJj&y’ E^rES§^a^H^2^«W^f|«flN:V^iru,nS9isi5’*li l 

1 vfw^xi  aT^aijjg'g ?\eu  if : <£\& C fjX% 2 1 ; 

'a?  V9t « a:^aV| s 

9 I UoZ^  # Og^3|0ljj  ^jftw«Vzi  9 Ks)1Z£j&X  UJtZt/6^ 

MX/?#  &JbQirl2$ffi  «3  J vrZygij 

* ■ « ft 

m |*am jf^exi , . 

I 1 I 

N.  S.  The  thin  lines  with  No.  over  them  denote  the  corresponding  lines  of  the 

lower  inscription  on  the  Bihar  Pillar. 



Inscription  on  the  Kahaon  Pillar. 

<«3gt%4^»^<t>|'3  T:  Mff'Tf  »| 
wnjyfi'a^eas'aa^f]  * 



A.  Cunningham,  del. 

Fhotozmr ogp aph.e d ax  tiip  Surveyor  General’s  Offi.ce  Calcutta. 





Immediately  to  the  north  of  the  pillar,  and  on  the  high- 
est point  of  the  mound,  there  are  traces  of  the  brick  Avails  of 
some  buildings;  and  to  the  south-east,  there  is  an  old  well 
which  has  been  lately  filled  up.  Buchanan  describes  the  pillar 
as  having  originally  “ stood  in  a small  quadrangular  area,  sur- 
rounded by  a brick  wall,  and  probably  by  some  small  cham- 
bers.” I presume  that  the  pillar  must  have  been  placed 
opposite  the  entrance  of  the  temple,  in  which  the  Panchendra 
or  five  images  of  Indra  were  enshrined.  It  is  probable  that 
there  were  several  temples  and  other  buildings  crowded 
around  the  pillar,  otherwise  it  will  he  difficult  to  account  for 
the  great  size  of  the  mound,  which,  though  not  more  than  6 
feet  in  height  above  the  fields,  extends  from  west  to  east  up- 
wards of  1,200  feet,  with  an  average  breadth  of  400  feet. 


Twelve  miles  to  the  east  of  Deogong,  and  nearly  mid- 
way between  Azimgarh  and  Banaras,  there  is  an  old  dry  tank, 
called  Eathiya-dah,  or  the  “ Elephant’s  Tank,”  with  an  in- 
scribed pillar  standing  in  the  middle  of  it.  The  pillar  itself 
is  called  PLathiya-dah-ka-ldt.  The  name  is  derived  from  a 
large  stone  elephant,  5 feet  6 inches  in  length,  and  4 feet 
10  inches  in  height,  which  stands  to  the  north-west  of  the 
pillar,  at  a distance  of  138  feet.  Both  the  pillar  and  the 
elephant  are  formed  of  a coarse  grey  sand-stone,  and  they 
have  accordingly  suffered  from  exposure  to  the  weather,  and 
are  now  much  worn.  The  shaft  of  the  pillar  is  a single 
block,  12  feet  9 inches  in  height  and  1 foot  5J  inches  in  dia- 
meter, both  at  base  and  top.  Originally  it  must  have  been 
several  feet  higher,  but  the  bed  of  the  tank  has  gradually 
silted  up,  and  in  the  month  of  March  bore  a fine  crop  of 
wheat.  The  capital  is  a flat  circular  slab,  slightly  rounded 
on  the  upper  edge,  and  quite  plain.  In  fact,  the  pillar  is  a 
mere  cylindrical  block  intended  apparently  for  the  sole  pur- 
pose of  exhibiting  the  inscription.  To  the  west  of  the  pil- 
lar there  is  a low  mound  of  brick  ruins,  170  feet  in  length 
from  north  to  south,  and  25  feet  broad.  It  is  called  Siwari- 
ka-TUa,  or  “ Siwaris’  Mound;”  but  the  people  have  no  tra- 
dition about  it,  and  do  not  know  what  is  the  meaning  of  the 
names.  Most  probably  it  has  some  reference  to  a temple 
of  Siva,  which  may  have  stood  there  in  former  days.  The 
villages  nearest  to  the  pillar  are  Singhpura  to  the  north, 



Noioa  Rasiya  to  the  east,  Pakari  to  the  south-east,  Dehluto 
to  the  south-west. 

The  pillar  is  said  by  the  people  to  have  been  set  up  by 
Raja  Gajpat  Singh  in  Samvat  207,  or  A.  D.  150 ; but  both 
name  and  date  are  wrong.  Gajapati,  or  “Lord  of  Ele- 
phants,” is  only  one  of  the  titles  of  the  king  in  whose  reign 
the  pillar  was  erected,  and  the  date  is  Samvat  1207,  or  A.  I). 
1150.  This  inscription  occupies  10  lines,  but  as  the  letters 
are  large  and  coarsely  cut,  it  is  not  a long  one.  It  records 
the  excavation  of  the  tank  by  several  Thd/curs,  of  whom  the 
chief  is  “ Pellan  Thalcur,  the  Treasurer  (Bhandagarika)  of 
Gosalla  Devi,  the  Queen  (Mahdraji)  of  Baja  Govinda 
Chandra  Deva,  the  Lord  of  Horses,  Lord  of  Elephants,  and 
Lord  of  Men,  on  Thursday,  the  5tli  of  the  waning  moon  of 
Ashdrh,  in  Samvat  1207.”  The  record  is  not  of  much  value, 
but  it  is  of  later  date,  by  25  years,  than  any  inscription 
hitherto  found  of  the  Rahtor  Prince  Govinda  Chandra  Leva 
of  Kanoj. 


The  large  village  of  Bhitari  is  situated  on  the  left  bank 
of  the  Gd.nyi  Nadi  nearly  midway  between  Banaras  and 
Ghazipur,  and  five  miles  to  the  north  north-east  of  Saidpur. 
The  Gangi  River,  which  surrounds  the  village  on  three  sides, 
is  crossed  by  an  old  stone  bridge  of  early  Muhammedan 
style.  The  oldest  bridge  consisted  of  only  two  small 
arches,  to  which  two  others  have  since  been  added  at 
different  times.  Bhitari  has  once  been  a town  of  some 
consequence,  and  it  is  still  a considerable  village,  with 
a great  number  of  brick-houses.  Both  in  speaking  and  in 
writing,  its  name  is  usually  coupled  with  that  of  another  place 
in  its  vicinity  as  Saidpur  Bhitari.  It  is  thus  designated  in 
the  Ain  Akbari,  but  the  name  has  been  strangely  misread  by 
Gladwin  as  Syedpoor  Nemedy  * a mistake  that  must  be  due 
to  the  faulty  nature  of  the  Persian  character  in  which  his 
original  was  written,  as  its  alphabet  is  utterly  unsuited  for 
the  correct  record  of  proper  names. 

The  remains  at  Bhitari  consist  of  several  ruined  brick 
mounds,  an  inscribed  stone  pillar,  and  a few  pieces  of  sculp- 

* English  Translation,  II.,  p.  2l)2. 



ture.  Some  of  the  mounds  appear  to  he  mere  heaps  of 
broken  stone  and  brick — the  gatherings  from  the  fields  after 
each  season’s  ploughing.  The  larger  mounds,  which  run 
parallel  to  each  other  from  the  bridge  towards  the  village, 
seem  to  me  to  be  only  the  ruins  of  houses  that  once  formed 
the  two  sides  of  a street.  The  remaining  mounds,  which 
are  of  square  form  and  isolated,  are  at  present  covered  with 
Musalman  tombs ; but  I have  little  doubt  that  all  of  them 
were  originally  either  temples  or  other  Hindu  buildings. 
That  one  of  these  mounds  belonged  originally  to  the  Hindus, 
we  have  an  undoubted  proof  in  the  existence  of  the  inscribed 
stone  pillar,  which  stands  partially  buried  in  the  rubbish 
of  its  eastern  slope,  and  in  the  discovery  at  the  foot  of  the 
pillar  of  an  old  brick  inscribed  with  the  name  of  Sri  Kumdra 
Gupta.  The  early  occupation  of  the  place  by  the  Hindus 
is  further  proved  by  the  discovery  of  several  Hindu  statues 
and  lingams  in  the  rubbish  about  the  mounds,  and  by  the 
finding  of  numerous  bricks  inscribed  with  Kumdra  Gupta's 
name  in  the  fields.*  I obtained  further  proof  of  the  same 
by  the  purchase  on  the  spot  of  three  Indo-Sassanian  coins  of 
base  silver,  which  probably  date  from  the  8th  or  9th  century, 
and  of  one  small  round  copper  coin  with  an  elephant  on  the 
obverse,  and  a peculiar  symbol,  supposed  to  be  a Chaitya , 
on  the  reverse,  which  cannot,  in  my  opinion,  be  of  later 
date  than  the  invasion  of  Alexander  the  Great. 

The  Bhitari  Pillar  is  a single  block  of  reddish  sand-stone, 
apparently  from  one  of  the  Chunar  quarries.  The  shaft  of 
the  pillar  is  circular,  with  a diameter  of  2 feet  4|-  inches,  and 
a height  of  15  feet  5 inches.!  The  base  is  square,  but  its 
height  is  rather  uncertain.  The  upper  portion,  on  which  the 
inscription  is  cut,  has  been  smoothed,  but  the  lower  portion, 
as  far  as  my  excavation  went,  still  bears  the  marks  of  the 
chisel,  although  not  very  deep.  My  excavation  was  carried 
down  to  the  level  of  the  adjoining  fields,  a depth  of  6 feet 
9 inches  below  the  top  of  the  base,  without  finding  any  trace 
of  a pedestal ; and  as  it  is  most  probable  that  the  inscrip- 
tion was  placed  on  a level  with  the  eye,  I-  would  fix  the 
height  of  the  original  base  at  about  6 feet,  thus  giving  it  an 
elevation  of  only  9 inches  above  the  level  of  the  country. 

* See  Plate  XXX.  for  sketches  of  these  bricks. 

+ See  Plate  XXIX.  for  a view  of  this  pillar. 




The  capital  is  3 feet  2 inches  in  height,  hell-shaped,  and 
reeded  like  the  capitals  of  the  Asoka  Pillars.  A large  por- 
tion of  the  capital  is  broken  of  on  the  western  side,  thus 
exposing  a deep  narrow  socket,  which  could  only  have  held 
a metal  spike.  The  upper  portion  of  the  shaft  also  is  split 
to  a depth  of  about  2 feet.  The  people  say  that  the  pillar 
was  struck  by  lightning  many  years  ago.  It  certainly  was 
in  the  same  state  when  I first  saw  it  in  January  1836,  and 
I know  of  only  one  reason  to  make  me  doubt  the  accuracy 
of  the  people’s  statements,  namely,  that  both  the  iron  pillar 
at  Delhi,  and  the  stone  pillar  at  Namndgarh  Lciuriya,  have 
been  wantonly  injured  by  cannon  shot.  If  the  capital  of 
the  Bliitari  Pillar  had  been  surmounted  by  a statue  of  any 
kind,  as  it  most  propably  was  when  the  Muhammadans  first 
settled  there,  I think  that  the  breaking  of  the  capital  may 
be  attributed  to  their  destructive  bigotry  with  quite  as  much 
probability  as  to  lightning.  I found  a portion  of  the  broken 
capital  in  my  excavation  at  the  foot  of  the  pillar. 

The  inscription,  which  is  cut  on  the  eastern  side  of  the 
base,  consists  of  19  lines  of  well  shaped  characters  of  the 
early  Gupta  period.  Unfortunately,  this  face  is  much  wea- 
ther-worn, and  the  stone  has  also  peeled  off  in  several  places, 
so  that  the  inscription  is  now  in  even  a worse  condition  than 
when  I first  saw  it  in  January  1836.  The  copy  which  I 
then  made  by  eye  I compared  letter  by  letter  with  the  origi- 
nal inscription  on  the  spot,  and,  although  I found  several 
errors  in  different  parts  of  the  inscription,  yet  the  only  seri- 
ous one  is  an  omission  of  five  letters  in  the  15th  line.  I 
made  also  an  impression  of  the  inscription  over  which  I 
pencilled  all  the  letters  as  they  appeared  to  the  eye.  This  is, 
indeed,  the  only  successful  method  of  copying  a weather-worn 
inscription ; for  the  edges  of  the  letters  being  very  much 
rounded,  an  impression  gives  only  a number  of  confused  and 
shapeless  spots,  although  many  of  the  letters  being  deeply 
cut  are  distinctly  legible,  and  may  easily  be  copied  by  the 
eye.  The  value  of  an  impression  thus  pencilled  over  is  very 
great,  as  it  ensures  accuracy  in  the  number  of  letters,  and 
thus  most  effectually  prevents  all  errors,  both  of  insertion 
and  omission.  The  copy  which  I have  thus  made  is,  I be- 
lieve, as  perfect  as  it  is  possible  to  obtain  now,  considering 
the  weather-worn  state  of  the  letters.* 

* See  Plate  XXX.  for  a copy  of  tins  inscription. 



From  the  copy  which  I prepared  in  January  1S3G,  a 
translation  was  made  by  Fr.  Mill,  which  was  published  in 
Prinsep’s  Journal  for  January  1837.  My  re-examination  of 
the  inscription  has  corrected  some  of  Fr.  Mill’s  proposed 
readings,  while  it  has  confirmed  many  of  them,  a few  being 
still  doubtful  owing  to  the  abraded  state  of  the  letters.  As 
translated  by  Fr.  Mill,  the  inscription  refers  chiefly  to  the 
reign  of  Skanda  Gupta , closing  with  his  death,  and  the 
accession  of  his  infant  son.  The  object  of  the  inscription 
was  to  record  the  erection  of  a sacred  image,  the  name  of 
which  Fr.  Mill  was  unable  to  read,  but  which  may  possibly  be 
recovered  when  my  new  copy  is  re-translated  by  some  com- 
petent scholar.  In  my  remarks  on  the  lower  inscription  on 
the  Bihar  Pillar,  I have  already  noticed  that  all  the  remain- 
ing part  of  the  itpper  portion  of  it,  which  contains  the 
genealogy,  is  letter  for  letter  identical  with  the  first  part  of 
Bhitari  record,  and  I repeat  the  notice  here  for  the  purpose 
of  adding  that,  by  a comparison  of  the  two  inscriptions,  every 
letter  of  the  upper  part  of  both,  or  about  one-third  of  the 
whole,  may  be  restored  without  chance  of  error.* 

The  sculptures  now  to  be  seen  at  Bhitari  are  very  few, 
but  they  are  sufficient  to  show  the  former  existence  of  several 
large  stone  temples.  In  the  village  there  is  a colossal  figure 
of  Ganesa,  and  a broken  bas-relief  of  the  Navagraha,  or 
“ INine  Planets.”  The  colossal  statue  must  almost  certainly 
have  been  the  principal  figure  enshrined  in  a temple  dedi- 
cated to  Ganesa.  There  is  also  a large  slab  with  a half-size 
two-armed  female  figure,  attended  by  another  female  figure 
holding  an  umbrella  over  her,  both  in  very  high  relief.  The 
figures  in  this  sculpture  are  in  the  same  style  and  in  the 
same  attitudes  as  those  of  the  similar  group  of  the  Baja  and 
his  umbrella  attendant  on  the  gold  coins  of  the  Gupta 
Princes.  This  sculpture,  I believe,  represents  a queen  on 
her  way  to  worship  at  the  temple.  The  group  is  a favorite, 
one  with  Hindu  artists,  and,  as  far  as  my  observation  goes, 
it  is  never  used  singly,  but  always  in  pairs — one  on  each  side 
of  the  door-way  of  a temple.  The  age  of  this  sculpture  I 
am  inclined  to  fix  as  early  as  the  time  of  the  Gupta  Kings, 
partly  on  account  of  the  similarity  of  style  to  that  of  their 
gold  coins,  partly  also  because  the  pillar  belongs  to  one  of 

* The  two  inscriptions  may  now  he  compared  in  Plates  XVII.  and  XXX. — See  my 
previous  remarks  in  note  in  page  38. 


that  family,  but  chiefly  because  the  bricks  found  in  various 
parts  of  the  ruins  arc  stamped  with  the  name  of  Sri  Kumdra 

If  I am  right  in  attributing  the  sculptures  to  the  time 
of  the  Gupta  Dynasty,  or  from  A.  D.  100  to  300,  then  the 
Bhitari  ruins  will  be  amongst  the  oldest  Bralimanical  remains 
now  knowm  to  us.  .For  this  reason  alone  I would  strongly 
advocate  the  excavation  of  all  the  isolated  mounds,  and  more 
particularly  of  the  pillar  mound,  in  which  we  might  expect 
to  find  not  only  all  the  fragments  of  the  original  capital,  but 
also  many  sculptures  and  other  objects  belonging  to  the 
temple  in  front  of  which  the  pillar  was  erected.  I have 
already  stated  that  the  bridge  over  the  Gangi  Elver  is  built 
entirely  of  stones  taken  from  the  ancient  buildings  of  Bhitari. 
Many  of  these  stones  are  squared,  and  ornamented  with 
flowers  and  various  mouldings,  and  on  one  of  them  I observed 
the  syllable  vi.  This  is  a mere  mason’s  mark,  but  as  the 
shape  of  the  letter  is  the  same  as  that  of  the  Gupta  alphabet, 
the  discovery  of  this  single  character  tends  strongly  to  con- 
firm the  accuracy  of  the  date  which  I have  already  assigned 
to  the  Bhitari  ruins  on  other  grounds.  As  Bhitari  is  in  the 
Jdgliir  of  the  enlightened  Baja  Deo  Narayan  Singh,  every 
facility  for  excavation  would,  of  course,  be  obtained  on  appli- 
cation to  him. 

At  my  recommendation  the  Government  afterwards 
authorized  a small  sum  for  excavations,  and,  at  my  request, 
my  friend  Mr.  C.  Horne,  of  the  Civil  Service,  then  Judge  of 
Banaras,  kindly  undertook  to  superintend  the  work.  His 
report,  which  follows,  gives  a tolerably  full  and  interesting 
account  of  this  ancient  place  : 

“ Bhitari  is  a small  bazaar  and  village  situated  on  the 
Gangi  Nadi,  about  4^  miles  north-east  by  north  of  Syedpur, 
on  the  high  road  from  Banaras  to  Ghazipur.  It  is  called 
Syedpur  Bhitari,  and  Baja  Deo  Narain  Singh  derives 
his  title  from  it.  On  approaching  from  the  south-west  by  a 
good  fair  weather  road,  it  presents  the  appearance  of  a very 
large  ruined  earthen  fort.  In  general  form  it  is  nearly  a 
rectangle,*  and  the  only  deviation  from  that  form  is  caused 
by  an  eminence  or  spur  running  from  the  south-west  corner, 
and  which  has  evidently  been  always  crowned  by  some 

* East  face  500  yards.  South  525  yards,  West  685  yards,  North  700  yards. 



imposing  edifice.  The  nature  of  the  ground  has  been  skil- 
fully brought  to  hear ; and  it  would  seem  that  the  west  face 
was  merely  scarped  towards  the  river,  having  been  originally 
very  high  (perhaps  thirty  feet),  whilst  to  the  east  a large 
space  has  been  lowered  a few  feet  to  provide  earth  to  raise  an 
embankment,  in  digging  through  which  no  traces  of  masonry 
can  he  found.  On  the  south  face  the  line  is  by  no  means 
straight,  the  nature  of  the  ground  having  been  followed,  and 
the  high  hank  of  a tank  already  formed  having  been  merely 
added  to  the  north  face  is  more  regular. 

“ Each  of  these  sides  had  large  mounds,  upon  which  were 
either  temples  or  forts.  There  is  one  of  these  at  each  corner, 
and  one-half  way  on  each  side,  whilst  the  spur  before  alluded 
to,  which  forms  the  south-west  corner,  has  certainly  been  long 
ago  crowned  with  a large  Buddhist  temple,  now  re-placed 
with  a shabby  Idgah.  Within  this  enclosure  were  evidently 
many  large  buildings,  and  their  former  presence  is  attested 
by  the  hheras  or  mounds  of  broken  brick  and  earth  scattered 
in  every  direction.  At  present  there  is  a small-  winding 
bazar  of  insignificant  shops,  all,  however,  built  of  old  bricks. 
There  is  also  a large  suburb,  if  it  may  he  so  termed,  of 
ruinous  brick  houses  with  hut  few  inhabitants.  The  surround- 
ing mounds  and  embankments  are  dotted  over  with  Muham- 
madan tombs,  mostly  of  very  recent  erection,  and  many  of 
which  are  built  with  the  large  nearly-square  Buddhist  bricks. 

“ But  to  proceed  to  the  object  of  this  notice,  viz.,  the 
Buddhist  remains  at  Bhitari — Is/,  there  is  a large  monolith 
standing,  as  nearly  as  possible,  in  the  centre  of  the  place. 
This  is  28-|  feet  in  height,  and  stands  upon  a rough  stone 
7 or  8 feet  below  the  present  level  of  the  soil.  Eor  the  first 
10  feet  2 inches  it  is  square,  and  stands,  as  nearly  as  possible, 
facing  the  cardinal  points.  At  the  top  of  the  square  part 
is  an  inscription  which  is  stated  by  General  Cunningham  to 
contain  a record  of  Skanda  Gupta ; this  faces  east.  The 
upper  part,  including  the  capital  which  takes  up  about  three 
feet,  is  circular,  and  where  it  joins  the  square  part  is  2 feet 
3 inches  in  diameter,  and  apparently  of  even  thickness  in  its 
whole  length.  The  capital  is  handsomely  fluted,  and  has  a 
slice  broken  off  it.  There  is  also  a flaw  near  the  top  in  the 
pillar  itself,  which  is  one  solid  piece  of  sand-stone,  resembling 
that  found  at  Chunar,  being  of  the  hard  kind. 



“ The  monolith  is  out  of  tlie  perpendicular,  and  this  de- 
viation, as  well  as  the  cracked  capital,  is  said  to  have  been 
occasioned  by  lightning  long  ago. 

“ I laid  bare  the  east  face  of  the  foundation  as  the  column 
slopes  to  the  north,  and  found  that  the  base  was  displaced 
three  inches  off  the  foundation-stone  on  the  south  side,  and 
that  there  were  two  iron  wedges  driven  under  it,  and  that 
at  some  remote  period  stone-work  of  a massive  character 
had  been  placed  around  to  prevent  further  declension.  I then 
cleared  the  mound  away  which  abutted  on  the  column, 
hoping  to  find  some  traces  of  foundations  at  least  of  the 
building  to  which  the  monolith  might  have  formed  an  adjunct. 
This  mound,  from  12  to  16  feet  in  height,  and  extended  some 
distance,  and,  as  far  as  I could  ascertain  by  cutting  a trench 
and  levelling,  consists  entirely  of  broken  bricks  and  earth. 

“ I will  now  refer  to  the  old  Buddhist  temple,  which  must 
formerly  have  stood  on  the  high  spur  to  the  south-west. 
Owing  to  the  presence  of  the  Idgali,  the  number  of  tombs, 
and  my  limited  time,  I made  no  excavations  on  this 
spot;  but  I was  easily  enabled  to  trace  the  various  parts 
of  the  temple  scattered  over  the  place  and  performing 
various  functions.  [Firstly,  there  were  the  pillars  of  the 
shrine,  with  their  carved  suns,  and  grotesque  faces  with 
foliage  flowing  from  their  mouths  and  eyes,  and  the  con- 
stantly recurring  flat  vase,  all  used  by  the  Muhammadans 
in  their  mosque.  Then  there  were  the  plainer  columns 
of  the  cloister,  square  below,  and  octagonal  above.  These 
latter  I found  rounded  off  and  set  up  as  Muhammadan 
liead-stones  to  graves,  the  light  being  burnt  on  the  top  of 
them ! Until  I discovered  two  of  these  in  situ,  or  at  the 
graves,  the  Musalmans  assured  me  they  were  Hindu  conver- 
sions of  the  Buddhist  pillars  into  emblems  employed  in  the 
worship  of  Mahadeo.  Secondly,  there  were  the  stone  beams 
used  also  in  the  mosque,  both  as  beams,  and  as  uprights  at 
the  wells  and  in  houses.  And,  lastly,  there  were  the  roofing 
stones  used  as  pavement  and  for  putting  over  graves. 

“ In  compliance  with  the  extract  of  General  Cunningham’s 
report,  several  cross  cuttings  were  made : The  one  through 

the  surrounding  mounds  to  see  what  kind  of  wall  had  been 
erected,  if  any, — the  result  of  this  has  been  before  alluded 
to ; Another  cutting  was  made  through  an  isolated  mound  of 



some  9 feet  in  height,  the  result  of  which  merely  proved  it  to 
have  an  ancient  dust  heap  ; A third,  through  a very  high  and 
likely  mound  resulted  in  nothing  but  earth  and  broken  bricks ; 
Another  has  since  been  made,  hut  the  results  were  the  same 
as  in  the  other  cases.  The  reason  for  this  is  very  plain  : 
Each  of  these  mounds  represents  an  ancient  edifice  not, 
perhaps,  of  the  time  of  the  Buddhists  (for  the  bricks  do  not 
hear  that  character),  hut  the  constant  excavation  of  found- 
ations for  the  past  200  years  for  the  purpose  of  building  has 
produced  the  results  above  alluded  to.  Each  party  has  taken 
the  bricks  he  needed  and  filled  in  again  the  rubbish. 

“ Just  below  the  Idgah  and  exterior  to  the  work  is  an  old 
Muhammadan  bridge  across  the  Gangi  Nadi,  which  might 
be  repaired  with  advantage.  This  has  been  entirely  con- 
structed with  the  cut-stones  taken  from  the  Buddhist  struc- 
ture above.  The  date  of  its  erection  may  have  been  from 
200  to  250  years,  since  or  subsequent  to  the  erection  of  that 
of  Jonpur,  which  it  resembles  in  many  points.  The  carved 
work  is  built  inwards. 

“ There  are  around  Bhitari,  at  some  little  distance,  say 
a quarter  or  half  a mile,  a number  of  detached  mounds  evi- 
dently of  Buddhist  origin,  and  apparently  of  artificial  con- 
struction. These  might  repay  excavation . 

“ In  conclusion,  I would  beg  to  suggest  with  all  deference, 
and  without  access  to  books,  my  knowledge  must  be  limited 
that  Bhitari  was  of  old  a strongly  fortified  earthen  camp,  in 
which  there  was  at  least  one  large  Buddhist  temple  and 
several  edifices  in  connection  with  the  same;  but  nothing 
short  of  a lengthened  residence  on  the  spot,  together  with 
careful  exploration,  can  ever  accurately  determine  the  nature 
of  the  latter.  It  is  difficult  to  account  for  the  base  of  the 
monolith  being  so  far  below  the  present  level  of  the  soil  with 
which  it  does  not  appear  to  me  ever  to  have  been  even.” 


Banaras  is  celebrated  amongst  the  Buddhists  as  the 
scene  where  their  great  teacher  first  expounded  his  doctrine, 
or,  as  they  metaphorically  express  it,  where  he  first  began  to 
“ turn  the  wheel  of  the  law.”  This  is  one  of  the  four  great 
events  in  the  life  of  Buddha,  and  accordingly  it  forms  one 
of  the  most  common  subjects  of  Buddhist  sculpture.  In  the 



great  Buddliist  establishment  near  Banaras,  which  is  des- 
cribed by  II wen  Thsang  the  principal  statue  enshrined  in  a 
temple  200  feet  in  height,  was  a copper  figure  of  Buddha 
represented  in  the  act  of  “ turning  the  wheel  of  the  law.” 
I found  numerous  statues  of  Buddha  in  the  same  attitude 
during  my  explorations  about  Sarnatli  in  1835-36,  and  Major 
Kittoe  discovered  several  more  in  1851-52.  I found  also 
many  others  figures,  but  those  of  Buddha,  the  £C  Teacher,” 
were  the  most  numerous.  The  inscribed  pedestal  found  by 
Bewail  Jagat  Singh  in  1794,  also  belonged  to  a statue  of 
Buddha,  the  Teacher.  Similarly  at  Buddha-Gaya,  where  Sakya 
Sinha  sat  for  six  years  meditating  under  the  Bodhi  Tree,  the 
favourite  statue  is  that  of  Buddha  the  Ascetic. 

The  city  of  Banaras  is  situated  on  the  left  bank  of  the 
Ganges,  between  the  Barna  Nadi  on  the  north-east,  and  the 
Asi  Ndla  on  the  south-west.  The  Barna , or  Varand,  is  a 
considerable  rivulet,  which  rises  to  the  north  of  Allahabad, 
and  has  a course  of  about  100  miles.  The  Asi  is  a mere 
brook  of  no  length,  and,  owing  to  its  insignificant  size,  it  does 
not  appear  in  any  of  our  most  detailed  maps.  It  is  not 
entered  in  the  Indian  Atlas  Sheet  No.  88,  which  is  on  the 
scale  of  four  miles  to  the  inch,  nor  even  in  the  larger  litho- 
graphed map  of  the  District  of  Banaras  on  the  double  scale 
of  two  miles  to  the  inch.  This  omission  has  led  the  learned 
French  Academician  M.  Vivien  de  Saint  Martin  to  doubt  the 
existence  of  the  Asi  as  a tributary  of  the  Ganges,  and  he 
conjectures  that  it  may  be  only  a branch  of  the  Barna,  and 
that  the  joint  stream  called  the  Varanasi  may  have  commu- 
nicated its  name  to  the  city.  The  Asi  Nala,  however,  will 
be  found,  as  I have  described  it,  in  James  Prinsep’s  map  of 
of  the  city  of  Banaras,  published  by  Hullmandel,  as  well  as 
in  the  small  map  which  I have  prepared  to  illustrate  this 
account.*  The  position  of  the  Asi  is  also  accurately  des- 
cribed by  H.  H.  Wilson  in  his  Sanskrit  Dictionary,  under  the 
word  Varanasi.  I may  add  that  the  road  from  the  city  to 
Namnagar  crosses  the  Asi  only  a short  distance  from  its  con- 
fluence with  the  river.  The  points  of  junction  of  both 
streams  with  the  Ganges  are  considered  particularly  holy, 

* See  Plate  XXXT. — The  Asi  is  mentioned  by  Abul  Fazl  in  his  Ain  Akbari,  II., 
p.  28;  and  by  Bishop  Heber,  I„  397,  and  moro  particularly  in  p,  399,  where  he  speaks  of 
“ the  small  river.” 


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C ajitonxneiit 

A.  Cunningham  del. 

lath  Suv;  Sea^  Office  Calcutta.  June  187 



Clia  uka  rifii  4Jh  V 

of  the  Rums  a.t 





aud  accordingly  temples  have  been  erected  both  at  Barna 
Sang  am  below  the  city,  and  at  Asi  Sangam  above  the  city. 
From  the  joint  names  of  these  two  streams,  which  bound  the 
city  to  the  north  and  south,  the  Brahmans  derive  Varanasi 
or  Varanasi,  which  is  said  to  be  the  Sanskrit  form  of  the 
name  of  Banaras.  But  the  more  usual  derivation  amongst 
the  common  people  is  from  Baja  Bandr,  who  is  said  to  have 
re-built  the  city  about  800  years  ago. 

The  Buddhist  remains  of  Banaras  are  situated  nearly 
due  north,  and  about  3^  miles  distant  from  the  outskirts  of 
the  city,  at  a place  popularly  known  by  the  name  of  Sarnath. 
This  name,  which  is  usually  applied  to  the  great  Buddhist 
tower,  or  stupa,  belongs  properly  to  a small  Brahmanical 
temple  on  the  western  bank  of  the  lake,  while  the  great 
tower  itself  is  called  Dhamek.  An  annual  fair  is  held  close 
to  the  temple  of  Sarnath,  and  there  is  an  indigo  factory 
only  200  yards  to  the  north  of  it.  The  name  of  Sarnath  was, 
accordingly,  well  known  both  to  the  Natives  and  to  the  Eng- 
lish, and  when  the  neighbouring  ruins  first  attracted  atten- 
tion, they  were  always  referred  to  by  that  name.  The  ear- 
liest mention  of  them  is  by  Jonathan  Duncan  in  1794,  in  his 
account  of  the  discovery  of  two  Urns  by  Babu  Jagat  Singh 
tc  in  the  vicinity  of  a temple  called  Sarnath.”*  It  is  possible 
that  Duncan  here  refers  to  the  Brahmanical  “ temple  but 
in  the  subsequent  notices  by  Wilford  and  James  Prinsep,  both 
of  whom  had  resided  for  many  years  at  Banaras,  the  name  of 
Sarnath  is  always  applied  to  the  great  tower.  The  same 
name  is  given  to  the  tower  in  an  engraving  which  was  pub- 
lished iri  1834  in  Captain  Elliot’s  Views  in  India. 

Sarnath  means  supply  the  “ best  Lord,”  which  title  is 
here  applied  to  the  god  Mahadeva,  whose  symbol,  the  ling  am , 
is  enshrined  in  the  small  temple  on  the  bank  of  the  lake. 
I believe,  however,  that  the  name  is  only  an  abbreviation  of 
Sdranggandtha,  or  the  “ Lord  of  Deer,”  which  would  also  be 
an  appropriate  epithet  for  Mahadeva,  who  is  frequently  re- 
presented as  holding  a deer  in  his  left  hand.  As  the  lake  in 
front  of  the  temple  is  still  occasionally  called  “ Sdrang  Tdl ,” 
my  conjecture  that  the  true  name  was  Sarangga  Nath  seems 
a very  probably  one ; but  I would  refer  the  epithet  to  Buddha 
himself,  who  in  a former  existence  was  fabled  to  have  roamed 

# Asiatic  Researches,  V.,  p.  131. 



the  woods  in  this  very  spot  as  the  king  of  a herd  of  deer. 
Bat  this  spot  was  specially  esteemed  by  the  Buddhists  on  ac- 
count of  a curious  story  which  is  given  at  some  length  hy 
Hwen  Thsang,  and  which,  as  illustrative  of  the  Buddhist 
tenderness  for  life,  I will  now  relate.* — “ The  Baja  of 
Banaras,  who  was  fond  of  sport,  had  slaughtered  so  many  deer 
that  the  king  of  the  deer  remonstrated  with  him,  and  offered 
to  furnish  him  with  one  deer  daily  throughout  the  year,  if  he 
would  give  up  slaughtering  them  for  sport.  The  Baja  con- 
sented. After  some  time,  when  it  came  to  the  turn  of  a hind, 
big  with  young,  to  be  presented  to  the  Baja,  she  objected 
that,  although  it  might  be  her  turn  to  die,  yet  the  turn  of  her 
little  one  could  not  yet  have  arrived.  The  king  of  the  deer 
(that  is,  Buddha)  was  struck  with  compassion,  and  offered  him- 
self to  the  Baja  in  place  of  the  hind.”  On  hearing  the  story 
the  Baja  exclaimed — “ I am  but  a deer  in  the  form  of  a man, 
but  you  are  a man  in  the  form  of  a deer.”  He  at  once  gave 
up  his  claim  to  the  daily  gift,  and  made  over  the  park  for 
the  perpetual  use  of  the  deer,  on  which  account  it  was  called 
the  e Deer  Park’  ( Mrigadava).  It  is  curious  to  learn  that 
a ramna , or  antelope  preserve  still  exists  in  the  neighbour- 
hood of  Sdrnath. 

The  principal  remains  at  Sarnath  are  the  following : 

1st. — The  great  stone  tower  call  Dharnek ; 2nd,  the  re- 
mains of  a large  brick  tower  opened  by  Jagat  Sing ; 3 rd,  the 
traces  of  buildings  excavated  by  myself  in  1835-36 ; 4 th,  the 
remains  of  buildings  excavated  by  Major  Kittoe  in  1851-52 ; 
and  5 th,  a high  mound  of  solid  brick-work  crowned  with  an 
octagonal  brick  tower,  called  Chaukandi,  and  situated  at 
rather  less  than  half  a mile  from  the  great  tower  of  Dharnek. 
With  the  simple  exception  of  Chaukandi,  the  whole  of  these 
remains  are  situated  on  an  extensive  mound  of  brick  and 
stone  ruins  about  half  a mile  long,  and  nearly  a quarter 
of  a mile  broad.  On  the  north  and  east  there  are  three  large 
sheets  of  water  which  communicate  with  one  another.  To 
the  east  lies  tlie  Narokar  or  Sdrang  Tdl,  which  is  3,000  feet 
long  and  1,000  feet  broad.  On  the  north-east  this  communi- 
cates with  the  Chandokar  or  Chandra  Tdl,  which  is  of  about 
the  same  size,  but  of  less  regular  shape.  On  the  north  lies 

# Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  p.  361. 



the  Natja  Tal,  or  “ New  Tank,”  which  is  upwards  of  half 
a mile  in  length,  hut  little  more  than  300  feet  in  width.* 

At  the  north-eastern  end  of  the  mass  of  ruin  is  situated 
the  village  of  Barahi , which,  as  I infer  from  the  spelling, 
must  have  been  named  after  Vajra  Vardhi,  a goddess  of  the 
later  Buddhists.  To  the  west,  beyond  the  bend  of  the  Naya 
Tal,  lies  Guronpur,  or  the  “ Village  of  Teachers,”  ivhicli  in 
its  day  was  probably  inhabited  by  Buddhist  Gurus.  The 
Mrigadava,  or  “ Deer  Park,”  is  represented  by  a fine  wood, 
which  still  covers  an  area  of  about  half  a mile,  and  extends 
from  the  great  tower  of  Dhamek  on  the  north  to  the 
Cliaukandi  mound  on  the  south.  To  the  south-west  of  the 
great  tower  the  Jains  have  erected  a modern  temple  of 
jPdrswandth.  The  temple  is  white-washed  and  surrounded 
by  a wall  enclosing  an  area  167  feet  square.  Since  I first 
surveyed  these  ruins  in  1835,  a second  or  outer  enclosure  has 
been  added  on  the  east  side,  the  walls  of  which  run  right  up 
to  the  great  tower  and  cause  much  inconvenience  to  visitors, 
by  obstructing  their  free  passage  round  the  building. 

The  most  remarkable  of  the  Sarnath  Monuments  is  the 
great  tower  called  Dliamek.  Mr.  Pergussonf  has  stated 
that  “ this  building  was  opened  by  Major  Cunningham, 
under  Mr.  Brinseps  auspices ;”  but  this  statement  is  incor- 
rect, as  the  operations  were  begun  by  myself  before  any 
communication  was  made  to  James  Prinsep,  and  were  after- 
wards continued  entirely  under  my  own  guidance.  The  cost 
of  opening  the  tower  was  shared  between  James  Prinsep, 
Captain1  Thoresby,  Major  Grant,  and  myself,  but  the  work 
had  been  commenced  “ under  my  own  auspices,”  and  was  not 
suggested  to  me  by  James  Prinsep.  The  excavation  was 
begun  in  December  1834,  and  closed  in  January  1836,  at  a 
cost  of  Rupees  517-3-10.  But,  before  detailing  these  opera- 
tions, I will  describe  the  tower  itself. 

The  Buddhist  stupa  called  Dliamek  is  a solid  round  tow- 
er, 93  feet  in  diameter  at  base  and  110  feet  in  height  above 
the  surrounding  mins,  but  128  feet  above  the  general  level 
of  the  country.  The  foundation  or  basement,  which  is  made 
of  very  large  bricks,  has  a depth  of  28  feet  below  the  level  of 
the  ruins,  but  is  sunk  only  10  feet  below  the  surface  of  the 

* See  Plate  XXXI. 

t Handbook  of  Architecture,  I.,  p.  15. 



country.  The  lower  part  of  the  tower,  to  a height  of  43  feet, 
is  built  entirely  of  stone  from  one  of  the  Chunar  quarries, 
and  with  the  exception  of  the  upper  five  courses,  the  whole 
of  this  part  of  the  building  is  a solid  mass  of  stone,  and  each 
stone,  even  in  the  very  heart  of  the  mass,  is  seemed  to  its 
neighbours  by  iron  cramps.  The  upper  part  of  the  tower  is 
built  entirely  of  large  bricks,  but  as  the  outer  facing  has  long 
ago  disappeared,  there  is  nothing  now  left  to  show  whether 
it  was  formerly  cased  with  stone,  or  only  plastered  over,  and 
coloured  to  imitate  the  stone-work  of  the  lower  portion.  I 
infer,  however,  that  it  was  plastered,  because  the  existing 
stone-work  terminates  with  the  same  course  all  round  the 
building,  a length  of  292  feet.  Had  the  upper  part  been 
cased  with  stone,  it  is  scarcely  possible  that  the  whole 
should  have  disappeared  so  completely  that  not  even  a single 
block  out  of  so  many  thousands  should  now  remain  in  its 
original  position.  In  one  part  I observed  some  projecting 
bricks  which  appeared  very  like  the  remains  of  a moulding  at 
the  base  of  the  dome.  On  the  top  I found  a small  brick  cap, 
8 feet  in  diameter  and  only  4 feet  high.  Erom  its  size  I infer 
that  this  was  the  ruin  of  the  base  of  a small  pinnacle,  about 
10  feet  square,  which  most  probably  once  supported  a stone 
umbrella.  I infer  this  because  the  figures  of  Buddha  the 
Teacher  arc  usually  represented  as  seated  under  an  umbrella. 

The  lower  part  of  the  monument  has  eight  projecting 
faces,  each  21  feet  6 inches  in  width,  with  intervals  of  15  feet 
between  them.  In  each  of  the  faces,  at  a height  of  24  feet 
above  the  ground,  there  is  a semi-circular  headed  niche,  5^ 
feet  in  width,  and  the  same  in  height.  In  each  of  the  niches 
there  is  a pedestal,  1 foot  in  height,  and  slightly  hollowed  on 
the  top  to  receive  the  base  of  a statue  ; but  the  statues  them- 
selves have  long  ago  disappeared,  and  I did  not  find  even  the 
fragment  of  one  in  my  excavation  at  the  base  of  the  monu- 
ment. There  can  be  little  doubt,  however,  that  all  the  eight 
statues  represented  Buddha  the  Teacher,  in  the  usual  form, 
with  his  hands  raised  before  his  breast,  and  the  thumb  and 
fore-finger  of  the  right  hand  placed  on  the  little  finger  of  the 
left  hand  for  the  purpose  of  enforcing  his  argument.  Judg- 
ing by  the  dimensions  of  the  niches,  the  statues  must  have 
been  of  life-size.* 

* I would  suggest  that  one  of  the  many  sitting  statues  of  Buddha  the  Teacher,  which 
have  since  been  discovered,  and  are  now  deposited  at  the  Banaras  College,  should  be 
placed  in  one  of  these  niches. 

BAN  Alt  AS,  S Alt  NATH. 


Prom  the  level  of  the  base  of  the  niches  the  eight  pro- 
jecting faces  lessen  in  width  to  five  feet  at  the  top ; but  the 
diminution  is  not  uniform,  as  it  begins  gradually  at  first,  and 
increases  as  it  approaches  the  top.  The  outline  of  the  slope 
may  have  been  possibly  intended  for  a curve,  but  it  looks 
much  more  like  three  sides  of  a large  polygon.  Around  the 
niches  seven  of  the  faces  are  more  or  less  richly  decorated 
with  a profusion  of  flowing  foliage.  The  carving  on  some  of 
the  faces  has  been  completed,  but  on  others  it  is  little  more 
than  half  finished,  while  the  south  face  is  altogether  plain. 
On  the  unfinished  faces  portions  of  the  unexecuted  ornamen- 
tation may  be  seen  traced  in  outline  by  the  chisel,  which 
proves  that  in  ancient  times  the  Hindus  followed  the  same 
practice  as  at  present,  of  adding  the  carving  after  the  wall 
was  built. 

On  the  western  face  the  same  ornamentation  of  flowing 
foliage  is  continued  below  the  niche,  and  in  the  midst  of  it 
there  is  a small  plain  tablet,  which  can  only  have  been  in- 
tended for  a very  short  inscription,  such,  perhaps,  as  the  name 
of  the  building.  A triple  band  of  ornament,  nearly  9 feet  in 
depth  below  the  niches,  encircles  all  the  rest  of  the  building, 
both  faces  and  recesses.  The  middle  band,  which  is  the 
broadest,  is  formed  entirely  of  various  geometrical  figures,  the 
main  lines  being  deeply  cut,  and  the  intervening  spaces  being 
filled  with  various  ornaments.  On  some  of  the  faces  where 
the  spaces  between  the  deeply  cut  lines  of  the  ruling  figures 
are  left  plain,  I infer  that  the  work  is  unfinished.  The 
upper  band  of  ornamentation,  which  is  the  narrowest,  is 
generally  a scroll  of  the  lotus  plant  with  leaves  and  buds 
only,  while  the  lower  band,  which  is  also  a lotus  scroll,  con- 
tains the  full  blown  flowers  as  well  as  the  buds.  The  lotus 
flower  is  represented  full  to  the  front  on  all  the  sides  except 
the  south  south-west,  where  it  is  shown  in  a side  view  with 
the  ChaJcwa  or  Brahmani  Goose  seated  upon  it.  This,  indeed, 
is  the  only  side  on  which  any  animal  representations  are 
given,  which  is  the  more  remarkable,  as  it  is  one  of  the  re- 
cesses and  not  one  of  the  projecting  faces.  In  the  middle 
of  the  ornament  there  is  a human  figure  seated  on  a lotus 
flower  and  holding  two  branches  of  the  lotus  in  his  hands. 
On  each  side  of  him  there  are  three  lotus  flowers,  of  which 
the  four  nearer  ones  support  pairs  of  Brahmani  Geese,  while 
the  two  farther  ones  carry  only  single  birds.  Over  the  nearest 



pair  of  geese,  on  tlie  right  hand  of  the  figure,  there  is  a 
frog.  The  attitudes  of  the  birds  are  all  good,  and  even  that 
of  the  human  figure  is  easy,  although  formal.  The  lotus 
scroll  with  its  flowing  lines  of  graceful  stalk,  mingled  with 
tender  buds  and  full  blown  flowers,  and  delicate  leaves,  is 
very  rich  and  very  beautiful.  Below  the  ornamental  borders 
there  are  three  plain  projecting  bands. 

I employed  two  expert  masons  for  twelve  months  in 
making  full-size  drawings  of  the  whole  of  these  hands  of 
ornament.  Two  plates  of  the  east  south-east  and  south 
south-west  sides  were  afterwards  engraved  in  Calcutta  under 
my  own  guidance,  for  publication  by  James  Prinsep  in  the 
Asiatic  Researches ; hut  his  lamented  illness  put  a sudden 
stop  to  the  work,  as  his  successor,  Mr.  Cumin,  would  not 
allow  the  mint  engraver  to  continue  it. 

Near  the  top  of  the  north-west  face  there  are  four  pro- 
jecting stones  placed  like  steps,  that  is,  they  are  not  imme- 
diately over  each  other,  and  above  them  there  is  a fifth  stone 
which  is  pierced  with  a round  hole  for  the  reception  of  a 
post,  or  more  probably  of  a flag-staff.  The  lowest  of  these 
stones  can  only  be  reached  by  a ladder,  hut  ladders  must 
have  been  always  available,  if,  as  I suppose,  it  was  customary 
on  stated  occasions  to  fix  flags  and  steamers  on  various  parts 
of  the  building,  in  the  same  manner  as  is  now  done  in  the 
Buddhist  countries  of  Burmah  and  Ladak. 

With  the  single  exception  of  the  Taj  Mahal  at  Agra, 
there  is,  perhaps,  no  Indian  building  that  has  been  so  often 
described  as  the  great  Buddhist  tower  near  Sarnath.  But 
strange  to  say,  its  dimensions  have  always  been  very  much 
under-stated,  although  the  circumference  might  have  been 
very  closely  ascertained  with  the  greatest  ease  in  a few 
minutes,  by  measuring,  either  with  a walking  stick  or  with 
the  fore-arm,  the  breadth  of  one  projecting  face  and  of  one 
recess,  which  together  form  one-eighth  of  the  whole.  H.  H. 
Wilson,  quoting  Wilford,  states  that  “ Sarnath  is  about  50 
feet  high,  and  may  be  as  many  paces  in  circumference.” 
Miss  Emma  Roberts  states  that  it  is  “ about  150  feet  in 
circumference,”  and  “ above  100  feet  in  height.”  Mr.  Eer- 
gusson  calls  it  between  50  and  GO  feet  in  diameter,  and 
110  feet  in  height.  This  last  statement  of  the  height  is 
correct,  having  been  taken  from  a note  of  mine,  which  was 



published  by  Mr.  Thomas  in  the  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s 
Journal.  This  height  was  carefully  measured  by  myself  with 
an  iron  chain  in  January  1835,  by  means  of  the  scaffolding 
which  I had  put  up  for  the  purpose  of  opening  the  tower. 
By  a previous  measurement  with  a theodolite  I had  found 
the  height  to  be  109  feet  10  inches.  The  breadth  of  one 
projecting  face  and  of  one  recess  is  36  feet  6 inches,  which 
multiplied  by  8 gives  292  feet  as  the  circumference,  and  a 
trifle  less  than  93  feet  as  the  diameter,  or  nearly  double  the 
thickness  stated  by  any  one  of  the  authorities  just  quoted. 

On  the  18th  January  1835  my  scaffolding  was  complet- 
ed, and  I stood  on  the  top  of  the  great  tower.  On  cutting 
the  long  grass  I found  two  iron  spikes,  each  8 inches  long, 
and  shaped  like  the  head  of  a lance.  ^On  the  following  day 
I removed  the  ruined  brick  pinnacle  and  began  sinking  a 
shaft  or  well,  about  5 feet  in  diameter.  At  3 feet  from  the 
top  I found  a rough  stone,  24  inches  x 15  inches  x 7 inches, 
and  on  the  25th  January,  at  a depth  of  10^  feet,  I found  an 
inscribed  slab  28f  inches  long,  13  inches  broad,  and  4<f  inches 
thick,  which  is  now  in  the  Museum  of  the  Bengal  Asiatic 
Society.  The  inscription  consists  of  the  usual  Buddhist 
formula  or  profession  of  faith  beginning  with  the  words  “ Ye 
Dharmma  hetii  prabhavd,  8fC.”  of  which  translations  have 
been  given  by  Mill,  Hodgson,  Wilson,  and  Burnouf.  The 
following  is  Hodgson’s  translation,  which  has  received  the 
approval  of  Burnouf : “ Of  all  things  proceeding  from 

cause,  their  causes  hath  the  Tathagata  (Buddha)  ex- 
plained. The  Great  Sramana  (Buddha)  hath  likewise  ex- 
plained the  causes  of  the  cessation  of  existence.”  The  letters 
of  this  inscription,  which  are  all  beautifully  cut,  appear  to  me 
to  be  of  somewhat  earlier  date  than  the  Tibetan  alphabet, 
which  is  known  to  have  been  obtained  from  India  in  the 
middle  of  the  7tli  century.  I would,  therefore,  assign  the 
inscription,  and  -consequently  the  completion  of  the  monu- 
ment, to  the  6th  century.* 

On  the  22nd  January  I began  to  excavate  a horizontal 
gallery  on  the  level  of  the  top  of  the  stone- work,  and  on  the 
] 4th  of  February,  at  a distance  of  44  feet,  the  gallery  joined 
the  shaft,  which  had  been  sunk  from  above.  As  I now  found 
that  the  upper  course  of  stone  was  only  a facing,  I sank  the 

* See  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1835,  p.  133,  for  different  translations,  and  Plate 
IX.  for  a copy  of  tlie  inscription.  The  original  stone  is  now  in  the  Museum  of  the  Asiatic 
Society  in  Calcutta. 



gallery  itself  down  to  the  level  of  the  stone-work,  and  con- 
tinued it  right  through  to  the  opposite  site.  I thus  dis- 
covered that  the  mass  of  the  inner  stone-work  was  only  33 
feet  in  height,  while  the  outer  stone- work  was  43  feet.  In  the 
middle,  however,  there  was  a pillar  of  stone-work,  rising  6 
feet  higher  than  the  inner  mass.  This  was,  perhaps,  used  as  a 
point  from  which  to  describe  the  circle  with  accuracy.  Small 
galleries  were  also  made  to  reach  the  tops  of  the  east  and 
west  faces,  but  nothing  was  discovered  by  these  works. 

The  labor  of  sinking  the  shaft  through  the  solid  stone- 
work was  very  great,  as  the  stones  which  were  large  (from 
2 to  3 feet  in  length,  18  inches  broad,  and  12  inches  thick) 
were  all  secured  to  each  other  by  iron  cramps.  Each  stone 
had  usually  eight  cramps,  four  above,  and  as  many  below,  all 
of  which  had  to  be  cut  out  before  it  could  be  moved.  I 
therefore  sent  to  Chunar  for  regular  quarrymen  to  quarry 
out  the  stones,  and  the  work  occupied  them  for  several 
months.  At  length,  at  a depth  of  110  feet  from  the  top  of 
the  monument,  the  stone  gave  place  to  brick-work,  made  of 
very  large  bricks.  Through  this  the  shaft  was  continued  for 
a further  depth  of  28  feet,  when  I reached  the  plain  soil 
beneath  the  foundation.  Lastly,  a gallery  was  run  right 
through  the  brick- work  of  the  foundation,  immediately  below 
the  stone- work,  but  without  yielding  any  result. 

Thus  ended  my  opening  of  the  great  tower  after  14 
months’  labour,  and  at  a cost  of  more  than  Bs.  500.  When 
I began  the  work  I was  not  aware  that  many  of  the  most 
hallowed  of  the  Buddhist  Monuments  were  only  memorial 
stupas,  raised  over  spots  rendered  famous  by  various  acts  of 
Buddha,  such  as  we  know  from  Hwen  Thsang’s  account  was 
the  great  tower  near  Banaras,  which  was  erected  by  Asoka 
near  the  spot  where  Buddha  had  began  to  “ turn  the  wheel 
of  the  law,”  that  is,  to  preach  his  new  doctrine.  The  “ tower 
of  the  Deer  Park  near  Banaras”  is  likewise  enumerated  by 
another  Chinese  author  as  one  of  the  “ eight  divine  towers” 
erected  on  sites  where  Buddha  had  accomplished  “many 
important  acts  of  his  terrestrial  career,”  the  particular  act 
which  he  had  accomplished  at  Banaras  being  his  preaching. 
This  tower  was  seen  by  Ea- Ilian  in  the  beginning  of  the  5th 
century,  who  notices  that  Buddha,  when  he  began  to  “ turn 
the  wheel  of  the  law,”  sat  down  looking  towards  the  west. 
Now,  on  the  western  face  of  the  great  tower  there  is  a small 



plain  tablet,  -which,  as  I have  said  before,  could  only  have 
been  intended  for  some  very  short  inscription,  such  as  the 
name  either  of  the  tower  itself,  or  of  the  event  which  it  was 
intended  to  commemorate.  But,  whatever  it  may  have  been 
intended  for,  its  position  was  no  doubt  significant,  and,  as  at 
Buddha  Gaya,  where  Sakya  had  been  seated  facing  the  cast, 
his  statue  was  placed  in  the  same  position,  so  at  Banaras, 
where,  when  he  began  to  preach  he  had  been  seated  facing 
the  west,  his  statue  must  have  been  placed  in  the  same 
direction.  I conclude  that  the  western  face  of  the  monument 
erected  to  commemorate  that  event  would  have  been  the 
principal  side,  and  that  any  inscription  would  certainly  have 
been  placed  on  that  side. 

It  now  only  remains  to  notice  the  name  by  which  this 
great  tower  is  known  amongst  the  people  of  the  neighbour- 
ing villages.  This  name  is  Dliamek,  of  which  no  one  knows 
the  meaning.  It  is  evidently  some  compound  of  Dliarmma, 
and,  bearing  in  mind  that  on  this  spot  Buddha  first  began  to 
“ turn  the  wheel  of  the  law,”  I would  suggest  that  Dliamek 
is  only  an  abbreviation  of  the  Sanskrit  D liar  mm  op  a clcs  a k a 
or  “ Preacher  of  Dliarmma ,”  which  is,  indeed,  the  common 
term  now  in  use  to  designate  any  religious  teacher.  The 
term  is  also  used  in  the  simpler  form  of  Dliarmma  desaka , 
which,  in  familiar  conversation,  would  naturally  be  shortened 
to  Dhamadek  and  Dliamek.  The  special  fitness  of  this  name 
for  the  great  tower  in  the  Beer  Park  at  Banaras  is  so  obvious 
and  striking,  that  I think  it  needless  to  offer  any  further 
remarks  on  the  subject. 

At  a distance  of  520  feet  to  the  westward  of  Dliamek, 
there  is  a large  circular  hole,  upwards  of  50  feet  in  diameter, 
surrounded  by  a very  thick  brick  wall.  This  is  the  ruin  of 
the  large  brick  stupa  which  was  excavated  by  Babu  Jagat 
Singh,  the  Dewan  of  Baja  Chait  Singh,  of  Banaras,  for  the 
purpose  of  obtaining  bricks  for  the  erection  of  Jagatganj. 
In  January  1794  his  workmen  found,  at  a depth  of  27  feet, 
two  vessels  of  stone  and  marble,  one  inside  the  other.  The 
inner  vessel,  according  to  Jonathan  Duncan’s  account,*  con- 
tained a few  human  bones,  some  decayed  pearls,  gold  leaves, 
and  other  jewels  of  no  value.  In  the  “ same  place”  under- 
ground, and  on  the  “ same  occasion,”  with  the  discovery  of 
the  urns,  there  was  found  a statue  of  Buddha,  bearing  an 

* Asiatic  Researches,  V.,  p.  131. 




inscription  dated  in  Samvat  1083,  or  A.  D.  1026.  An  imper- 
fect translation  of  this  inscription  was  given  by  Wilford, 
accompanied  by  some  remarks,  in  which  he  applies  the  state- 
ments of  the  record  to  the  great  tower  of  Dhamek,  instead 
of  to  the  building  in  which  it  was  actually  discovered.* 

At  my  suggestion  Major  Kittoe  made  a search  for  this 
statue  amongst  the  plundered  stones  of  Jagatganj,  where  it 
was  found  broken  and  mutilated.  The  inscription,  however, 
was  still  legible,  and  the  remains  of  the  figure  are  sufficient 
to  show  that  the  statue  was  a representation  of  Buddha  the 
Preacher,  and  not  of  Buddha  the  Ascetic.  Major  Kittoe  sent 
me  a transcript  of  the  inscription  in  modern  Nagari,  which  I 
strongly  suspect  to  have  been  Brakmanized  by  his  Banaras 
Pandits.  In  its  modern  Nagari  form,  as  translated  for  me,  it 
records  that  “ Main  Pdla,  Baja  of  Gauda , having  worship- 
ped the  lotus-like  foot  of  Sri  Dlidmardsi  (“  heap  of  light” 
? Buddha)  grown  in  the  lake  of  Varanasi,  and  having  for  its 
moss  the  hair  of  prosperous  kings,  caused  to  be  erected  in 
Kasi  hundreds  of  Isdna  and  Chitraghanta.  Sri  Sthira  Pala 
and  his  younger  brother,  Sri  Vasanta  Pala,  having  restored 
religion,  raised  this  tower  with  an  inner  chamber  and  eight 
large  niches. t”  Wilford  read  Bliupdla  instead  of  Isana,  but 
I am  unable  to  offer  any  conjecture  as  to  the  true  reading,  as 
I know  not  where  the  original  is  hoav  deposited.  Major  Kit- 
toe’s  facsimile  of  the  inscription  is,  perhaps,  amongst  those 
deposited  by  him  in  the  Asiatic  Society’s  Museum. 

My  reasons  for  fixing  on  the  large  round  hole,  520  feet 
to  the  west  of  the  great  tower,  as  the  site  of  the  stupa  exca- 
vated by  Jagat  Singh,  are  the  following : In  1835,  when 

I was  engaged  in  opening  the  great  tower  itself,  I made  re- 
peated enquiries  regarding  the  scenes  of  Jagat  Singh’s  disco- 
covery.  Every  one  had  heard  of  the  finding  of  a stone  box 
which  contained  bones,  and  jewels,  and  gold,  but  every  one 
professed  ignorance  of  the  locality.  At  length,  an  old  man 
named  SangJcar,  an  inhabitant  of  the  neighbouring  village 
of  Singhpur,  came  forward  and  informed  me  that,  when  he 

* Asiatic  Researches,  IX.,  204. 

t Isdna  means  “ light,  splendour,”  and  was  probably  the  technical  name  of  a “ lamp- 
pillar”  for  illumination.  Chitraghanta  means  a variegated  or  “ ornamented  bell.”  I would, 
therefore,  translate  the  two  words  as  “lamp-pillars  and  ornamental  bells.”  Gatida  is  the 
name  of  the  country  to  the  north  of  the  Uhaghra  River.  Gauda  was  also  the  name  of  the 
old  capital  of  Bengal. 



was  a boy,  be  bad  been  employed  in  tlie  excavations  made  by 
Jagat  Singli,  and  that  he  knew  all  about  the  discovery  of  the 
jewels,  &c.  According  to  his  account  the  discovery  consisted 
of  two  boxes,  the  outer  one  being  a large  round  box  of 
common  stone,  and  the  inner  one  a cylindrical  box  of  green 
marble  about  15  inches  in  height  and  5 or  6 inches  in  diame- 
ter. The  contents  of  the  inner  box  were  40  to  46  pearls,  14 
rubies,  8 silver  and  9 gold  earrings  (learn  phul),  and  three 
pieces  of  human  arm  bone.  The  marble  box  was  taken  to 
the  Bara  Sahib  (Jonathun  Duncan),  but  the  stone  box  was 
left  undisturbed  in  its  original  position.  As  the  last  state- 
ment evidently  afforded  a ready  means  of  testing  the  man’s 
veracity,  I enquired  if  he  could  point  out  the  spot  where  the 
box  was  left.  To  this  question  he  replied  without  any  hesi- 
tation in  the  affirmative,  and  I at  once  engaged  him  to  dig 
up  the  box.  We  proceeded  together  to  the  site  of  the  pre- 
sent circular  hole,  which  was  then  a low  uneven  mound  in 
the  centre  of  a hollow,  and,  after  marking  out  a small  space 
about  4 feet  in  diameter,  he  began  to  work.  Before  sunset 
he  had  reached  the  stone  box  at  a depth  of  12  feet,  and  at 
less  than  2 feet  from  the  middle  of  the  well  which  he  had 
sunk.  The  box  was  a large  circular  block  of  common  Chunar 
sand-stone,  pierced  with  a rough  cylindrical  chamber  in  the 
centre,  and  covered  with  a flat  slab  as  a lid.  I presented  this 
box,  along  with  about  60  statues,  to  the  Bengal  Asiatic  So- 
ciety, and  it  is  now  in  their  Museum,  where  I lately  recog- 
nized it.  In  their  catalogue,  however,  it  is  described  as 
“942B,  a Sarcophagus  found  in  the  tope  of  Ilanikyala  (!); 
Donor,  Lieutenant  A.  Cunningham.” 

The  discovery  of  the  stone  box  was  the  most  complete 
and  convincing  proof  that  I could  wish  for  of  the  man’s  vera- 
city, and  I at  once  felt  satisfied  that  the  relics  and  the  inscrib- 
ed figure  of  Buddha  found  by  Jagat  Singh’s  workmen  had 
been  discovered  on  this  spot,  and  consequently  that  they 
could  not  possibly  have  any  connexion  with  the  great  tower 
of  Dliamek.  My  next  object  was  to  ascertain  the  nature  of 
the  building  in  which  the  box  was  deposited.  As  I had  found 
the  box  standing  on  solid  brick-work,  I began  to  clear  away 
the  rubbish,  expecting  to  find  a square  chamber  similar  to 
those  which  had  been  discoverd  in  the  topes  of  Afghanistan. 
My  excavations,  however,  very  soon  showed  that,  if  any 
chamber  had  once  existed,  it  must  have  been  demolished  by 



Jagat  Singh’s  workmen.  Sangkar  then  described  that  the  box 
was  found  in  a small  square  hole  or  chamber  only  just  large 
enough  to  hold  it.  I cleared  out  the  whole  of  the  rubbish 
until  I reached  the  thick  circular  wall  which  still  exists.  I 
then  found  that  the  relic  box  had  been  deposited  inside  a 
solid  brick  hemispherical  stupa,  49  feet  in  diameter  at  the 
level  of  the  deposit,  and  that  this  had  been  covered  by  a 
casing  wall  of  brick,  16tj>  feet  in  thickness ; the  total  diameter 
at  this  level  was,  therefore,  82  feet.  The  solid  brick -work  of 
the  interior  had  only  been  partially  excavated  by  Jagat  Singh’s 
workmen,  nearly  one-half  of  the  mass,  to  a height  of  6 feet 
above  the  stone  box,  being  then  untouched.  I made  some 
excavations  round  the  outer  wall  to  ascertain  its  thickness, 
but  I left  the  brick-work  undisturbed. 

About  IS  years  afterwards,  the  excavation  of  this  stupa 
was  continued  by  Major  Kittoe  and  Mr.  Thomas  until  the 
whole  of  the  inner  mass  had  been  removed,  and  the  foundation 
of  the  outer  casing  exposed.  The  inner  diameter  is  given  by 
Mr.  Thomas  as  49  feet  6 inches,  the  slight  excess  over  my 
measurement  being  due  to  the  thickness  of  a base  moulding 
of  the  original  stupa.  I have  again  carefully  examined  the 
remains  of  this  monument,  and  I am  quite  satisfied  that  in 
its  original  state  it  was  an  ancient  hemispherical  stupa,  49  feet 
in  diameter  at  base,  and  about  35  or  40  feet  in  height,  includ- 
ing the  usual  pinnacle.  Afterwards,  when,  as  I suppose,  the 
upper  portion  had  become  ruinous,  it  was  repaired  by  the 
addition  of  a casing  wall  16^  feet  in  thickness.  The  diame- 
ter of  the  renewed  edifice  thus  became  82  feet,  while  the 
height,  inclusive  of  a pinnacle,  could  not  have  been  less  than 
50  feet. 

On  a review  of  all  the  facts  connected  with  this  ruin,  I 
incline  to  the  opinion  that  the  inner  hemisphere  was  an 
ancient  relic  stupa,  and  that  this  having  become  ruinous,  it 
was  repaired,  and  an  outer  casing  added  by  the  brothers 
Sthira  JPdla  and  Yasanta  Ycila  in  A.  D.  1026.  In  the  Ma- 
lt dwanno  we  find  the  record  of  similar  additions  having  been 
made  to  some  of  the  stupas  in  Ceylon,  and  I know  from  per- 
sonal inspection  that  many  of  the  great  Dhagopas  of  Barrnah 
have  been  increased  in  size  by  subsequent  additions. 

Due  south  from  the  great  tower  of  Dliamek,  and  at  a 
distance  of  2,500  feet,  there  is  a lofty  ruined  mound  of  solid 


P /ait  XXX//. 





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Magor  M RITTOE 

1851 -52 

A . r unrung-harn.  del 

Litho.  at  the  Survr.  Genl’s.  Office.  Cal.  October  1871- 



brickwork,  surmounted  by  an  octagonal  building.  "When  I 
first  lived  at  Banaras,  this  mound  was  always  known  by  the 
name  of  Chaukandi,  of  which  no  one  knew  the  meaning.  But 
during  my  late  visit  I found  that  the  old  name  was  nearly 
forgotten,  having  been  superseded  by  Luri-ka-kodan  or 
“ Luri’s  leap.”  Luri  was  an  Ahir,  who  jumped  from  the  top 
of  the  octagonal  building  some  years  ago,  and  was  killed. 
The  mound  itself  is  74  feet  in  height  to  the  floor  of  the  octa- 
gonal building  which  rises  23  feet  8 inches  higher,  making  a 
total  height  of  97  feet  and  8 inches.  An  inscription  over  one 
of  the  door-ways  of  the  building  records  that  it  was  built  in 
the  reign  of  Humdyun , as  a memorial  of  the  emperor’s 
ascent  of  the  mound. 

In  1835  I opened  this  mound  by  sinking  a well  from  the 
floor  of  the  building  right  down  to  the  plain  earth  beneath 
the  foundation.  I also  drove  a horizontal  gallery  to  meet  the 
well  about  half  way  up  the  ascent.  But  as  neither  of  these 
excavations  resulted  in  any  discovery,  I then  thought  it  pos- 
sible that  my  well  might  not  have  been  sunk  in  the  axis  of 
the  building.  I therefore  began  to  widen  the  well  from  the 
point  of  junction  of  the  gallery  until  it  was  nearly  20  feet  in 
diameter.  This  work  was  stopped  at  a depth  of  27  feet  by 
my  departure  from  Banaras.  I have  again  examined  this  ruin, 
and  I am  now  quite  satisfied  that  my  first  well  was  sunk  in 
the  very  centre  of  the  mound.  The  absence  of  any  relic 
chamber  shows  that  this  was  not  a relic  tower,  a conclusion 
which  is  fully  borne  out  by  Ewen  Thsang’s  description  of  one 
of  the  most  remarkable  of  the  sacred  edifices  near  the  Beer 
Park  at  Banaras,  which,  I believe,  may  be  identified  with  the 
Chaukandi  mound. 

At  2 or  3 li  (or  rather  less  than  half  a mile)  to  the 
south-west  of  the  Deer  Park  Monastery,  Hwen  Thsang  places 
a stupa  which  was  no  less  than  300  feet  in  height.*  This 
lofty  monument  sparkled  with  the  rarest  and  most  precious 
materials.  It  was  not  ornamented  with  rows  of  niches, 
neither  had  it  the  usual  bell-shaped  cupola,  but  its  summit 
was  crowned  with  a sort  of  religious  vase,  turned  upside  down, 
on  the  top  of  which  was  an  arrow.  This  is  the  whole  of 
Hwen  Thsang’s  account  of  this  remarkable  building,  which, 
although  too  meagre  to  gratify  curiosity,  is  still  sufficient  for 

* Julien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  p.  363. 



the  purpose  of  identification.  In  position  it  agrees  almost 
exactly  with  that  of  the  great  brick  mound  of  Chaukandi, 
which  I have  just  described.  The  distance  of  this  last  from 
the  ruined  mound  on  which  the  village  of  Barahipur  stands, 
and  which  I have  already  identified  with  the  position  of 
the  Beer  Park  Monastery,  is  just  half  a mile,  but  the 
direction  is  south  south-west  instead  of  south-west.  With 
regard  to  size,  it  is  difficult  to  say  what  may  have  been 
the  height  of  the  Chaukandi  edifice.  My  excavations  have 
proved  that  the  centre  of  the  present  mound  is  all  solid 
brick- work;  but  the  subsequent  explorations  of  Major 
Kittoe  have  brought  to  light  three  immense  straight  walls 
about  mid-way  up  the  eastern  side,  and  two  more  on  the 
western  side,  which  have  all  the  appearance  of  gigantic  but- 
tresses. Now,  as  these  walls  could  not  possibly  have  been 
required  for  the  stability  of  the  great  solid  mass  below,  it  seems 
not  unreasonable  to  conclude  that  they  must  in  some  way 
have  been  connected  with  the  support  of  the  upper  portion  of 
the  building,  which  no  longer  exists.  Hwen  Thsang’s  account 
is  somewhat  vague,  but  I believe  his  intention  was  to  describe 
a dome  or  cupola  narrowed  at  the  base,  like  the  neck  of  a 
religious  vase  reversed.  He  distinctly  states  that  it  was  not 
a bell-shaped  cupola,  that  is,  the  dome  did  not  spread  outwards 
in  the  form  familiar  to  us  in  the  great  Dhagopas  of  Rangoon 
and  Pegu.  An  excellent  illustration  of  the  reversed  vase 
form  may  be  seen  in  a rock-cut  temple  at  Ajanta,  given  by 

I will  conclude  this  notice  of  the  remains  at  Sarnath 
Banaras  with  a short  account  of  the  excavations  which  have 
been  made  at  different  times  during  the  last  seventy  years  in 
the  vicinity  of  the  great  tower  of  Dhamek. 

The  earliest  excavations  of  which  we  possess  any  record 
were  those  made  by  Baba  Jagat  Singh  in  1793-94,  for  the 
purpose  of  obtaining  materials,  both  stones  and  bricks,  for 
the  erection  of  a market-place,  in  the  city,  which  was  named 
after  himself,  Jagatganj.  I have  already  noticed  his  dis- 
covery, in  January  1794,  of  the  two  stone  boxes  containing  a 
few  bones,  with  some  decayed  pearls  and  slips  of  gold.  A 
brief  account  of  this  discovery  was  published  by  Jonathan 

* Hand-book  of  Architecture,  I.,  p.  20. 



Duncan,'*  and  a more  detailed  notice  by  Wilford  in  a later 
volume  of  tlie  same  work.  I can  add  little  to  their  accounts, 
except  that  the  original  green  stone  vase,  which  Jonathan 
Duncan  presented  to  the  Asiatic  Society  in  1791,  had  dis- 
appeared before  1831,  when  I wrote  to  James  Prinsep  about 
it.  I may  mention  also,  on  the  authority  of  the  work-people, 
that  the  dilapidated  state  of  the  lower  part  of  the  Dhamek 
Tower  is  due  entirely  to  the  meanness  of  Jagat  Singh,  who, 
to  save  a few  rupees  in  the  purchase  of  new  stones,  deliber- 
ately destroyed  the  beautiful  facing  of  this  ancient  tower.  As 
each  stone  was  slowly  detached  from  the  monument  by 
cutting  out  all  the  iron  cramps  by  which  it  was  seemed  to 
its  neighbours,  the  actual  saving  to  the  Baku  could  have  been 
but  little ; but  the  defacement  to  the  tower  was  very  great,  and, 
as  the  stones  were  removed  at  once,  the  damage  done  to  the 
tower  is  quite  irreparable. 

Jagat  Singh’s  discovery  would  appear  to  have  stimulated 
the  curiosity  of  the  British  officers,  for  Miss  Emma  Ptoberts, 
writing:  in  1834,  relates  that  “ some  40  or  50  vears  aero” 
(that  is,  about  1791)  “ the  ruins  near  Sarnatli  attracted  the 
attention  of  several  scientific  gentlemen,  and  they  commenced 
an  active  research  by  digging  in  many  places  around.  Their 
labours  were  rewarded  by  the  discovery  of  several  excava- 
tions filled  with  an  immense  number  of  flat  tiles,  having 
representations  of  Buddha  modelled  upon  them  in  wax.  It 
is  said  that  there  were  actuallv  cart  loads  of  these  images 
found  in  the  excavations  before  mentioned.  Many  were 
deposited  in  the  Museums  and  collections  of  private  indivi- 
duals ; but  whether  they  were  ever  made  the  subject  of  a 
descriptive  account  seems  doubtful,  there  being  at  least  no 
public  document  of  the  kind.”t  I can  add  nothing  to  Miss 
Roberts’  account,  as  all  my  enquiries  have  failed  to  discover 
any  of  the  wax  seals  of  Buddha  above  mentioned.  I may 
note,  however,  that  in  the  temples  of  Ladak  I have  seen 
small  chambers  quite  full  of  similar  little  figures  of  deceased 
Lamas.  In  Burmah  also  I have  seen  small  figures  of  Buddha 
in  bmnt  clay  accumulated  in  heaps  equal  to  cart  loads,  both 
in  the  caves  and  in  the  temples.  The  figured  seals  discovered 
near  Sarnath  would  appear  to  have  been  of  a similar  kind  to 
those  which  I extracted  from  the  ruined  building  close  to 

# Asiatic  Researches,  V.,  p.  131. 

+ Views  in  India,  &c.,  II.,  p.  8. 


archaeological  report,  1861-62. 

Jarasandlia’s  Tower  at  Giryek,  and  also  to  those  which  I have 
described  as  having  been  found  in  the  ruins  at  Bakror,  oppo- 
site to  Buddha  Gaya. 

The  next  excavations,  as  far  as  I am  aware,  were  those 
undertaken  by  myself  in  1835-36.  These  excavations,  as 
well  as  the  drawings  of  the  elaborate  ornament  of  the  great 
tower,  were  made  entirely  at  my  own  expense,  the  cost 
during  18  months  having  been  Rs.  1,200.  I made  several 
desultory  excavations  wherever  I saw  traces  of  walls,  but  they 
all  proved  to  belong  to  temporary  habitations  of  a late 
period.  At  last,  after  a heavy  fall  of  rain,  I observed  a piece 
of  terraced  floor  which  I ordered  to  he  cleared  for  the  pur- 
pose of  pitching  my  tent  upon  it.  After  a few  hours’  labour, 
however,  the  flooring  terminated  on  what  appeared  to  he  the 
edge  of  a small  tank,  which  was  only  13  feet  9 inches 
square.  Continuing  the  work,  I found  the  bases  of  pillars 
in  pairs  surrounding  the  square.  Amongst  the  rubbish 
inside  the  square,  I found  an  elaborately  sculptured  bas- 
relief,  in  grey  standstone,  representing  the  Nirvana  of 
Buddha.  The  stone  had  been  broken  into  four  pieces,  of 
which  one  was  missing,  but  the  remaining  three  pieces  are 
now  in  the  Calcutta  Museum.  This  sculpture,  I consider, 
particularly  interesting,  as  the  subject  is  treated  in  a novel 
and  striking  manner.  In  the  ordinary  representations  of 
the  death-bed  scene,  the  spectators  are  confined  to  a few 
attendants,  who  hold  umbrellas  over  the  body  or  reverentially 
touch  the  feet.  But  in  the  present  sculpture,  besides  the 
usual  attendants,  there  are  the  Navagraha  or  “Nine  Planets” 
in  one  line,  and  in  a lower  line,  the  Ashta  SaJcte  or  “ eight 
female  energies,”  a series  of  goddesses  apparently  belonging 
to  one  of  the  later  forms  of  Buddhism.  This  sculpture  is 
well  worthy  of  being  photographed. 

[Further  excavation  showed  that  the  small  pillared  tank, 
or  court-yard,  was  the  centre  of  a large  building,  68  feet 
square,  of  which  the  outer  walls  were  feet  thick.  My  ex- 
ploration was  not  completed  to  the  eastward,  as  the  walls  of 
the  building  in  that  direction  had  been  entirely  removed  by 
some  previous  excavation,  with  the  exception  of  detached 
portions  of  the  foundation,  sufficient  to  show  that  it  corre- 
sponded exactly  with  the  western  half  of  the  building.  The 
central  square  was  apparently  surrounded  by  an  open  veran- 
dah, which  gave  access  to  ranges  of  five  small  rooms  or  cells 


Plate  XXXm 






l ^ 




Litho.  at  the  Survr.  Genl’s.  Office,  Cal.  August  1371 



each  of  tlic  four  sides  of  the  building.  In  all  the  cells  I 
found  pieces  of  charred  wood,  with  nails  still  sticking  in 
some  of  them,  and  in  the  middle  cell  on  the  western  side  I 
found  a small  store  of  unhusked  rice  only  partially  burnt. 
In  a few  places  I found  what  appeared  to  be  pieces  of  ter- 
raced roofing,  and  in  one  place  a large  heap  of  charcoal.  On 
the  south  side  the  central  room  was  lost  by  previous  excava- 
tion, hut  on  the  north  side  I found  a room  entirely  open 
towards  the  verandah,  as  if  it  was  a hall,  or  place  of  general 
meeting  for  the  resident  monks.  Inside  this  room  there  was 
the  base  or  pedestal  of  what  I believe  to  have  been  a small 
votive  stupa,  the  top  of  which  probably  reached  to  the  roof 
and  took  the  place  of  a pillar.  A small  drain  led  under- 
ground from  the  north-west  corner  of  the  central  square  to 
the  outside  of  the  building  on  the  north,  for  the  purpose,  as 
I conclude,  of  carrying  off  the  rain-water.* 

The  building  which  I have  just  described  would  appear 
to  have  been  a l/thara,  of  “ Chapel  Monastery,”  that  is,  a 
monastery  with  a chapel  or  temple  forming  an  integral  part 
of  the  building.  Trom  the  thickness  of  the  outer  wall  I 
infer  that  this  edifice  was  not  less  than  three  or  four  stories 
in  height,  and  that  it  may  have  accommodated  about  50 
monks.  The  entrance  was  probably  on  the  south  side,  and  I 
think  that  there  must  have  been  a statue  of  Buddha  in  the 
northern  verandah.  The  bas-relief  which  I found  in  the 
central  square  almost  certainly  formed  one  of  the  middle 
architraves  of  the  court. 

Continuing  my  excavations  in  the  high  ground  to  the 
westward,  I came  upon  the  remains  of  a building  of  a totally 
different  description.  The  walls  of  this  edifice  were  3 feet 
thick  throughout,  and  I found  the  plaster  still  adhering  to 
the  inner  walls  of  what  I will  call  the  verandahs,  with 
borders  of  painted  flowers,  quite  fresh  and  vivid.  The  mass 
of  the  building  consisted  of  a square  of  34  feet,  with  a small 
porch  on  each  of  the  four  side.  The  building  was  divided 
into  three  parts  from  west  to  east,  and  the  central  part  was 
again  sub-divided  into  three  small  rooms.  I think  it  pro- 
bable that  these  three  rooms  were  the  shrines  of  the  Buddhist 
Triad  Dharmma , Buddha,  and  Sangha,  and  that  the  walls  of 

* See  Plate  XXXIII.  for  the  plans  of  these  buildings.  The  position  is  marked  by 
the  letter  P.  in  the  sketch  of  the  ruins  in  Plate  XXXII. 




the  two  long  rooms  or  verandahs  to  the  north  and  south 
were  covered  with  statues  and  bas-reliefs.  The  entrance 
verandah  of  one  of  the  vihar  caves  at  Kdnhari , in  Salsette, 
is  adorned  in  a similar  manner ; and  even  in  the  present  day 
the  inner  walls  of  the  temples,  both  in  Ladak  and  in  Barmah, 
are  covered  with  figures  of  Buddha.  This  also,  as  we  know 
from  II wen  Thsang’s  account,  was  the  style  of  the  walls  of 
the  great  vihar  in  the  Deer  Park  at  this  very  place,  and  a 
similar  style  of  ornamentation  prevailed  both  at  Buddha  Gaya 
and  at  Nalanda.  Outside  the  walls  also  I found  a great 
number,  about  50  or  GO,  of  large  deeply  carved  stones,  which 
had  once  formed  part  of  a magnificent  frieze,  with  a bold 
projecting  cornice.  The  face  of  the  frieze  was  ornamented 
with  small  figures  of  Buddha  seated  at  intervals  in  peculiar 
shaped  niches,  which  I have  traced  from  the  rock  hewn  caves 
of  Dhamnar,  in  Malwa,  to  the  picturesque  but  fantastic 
Kyoungs  of  Burmali.  A few  of  these  stones  may  now  be 
seen  in  the  grounds  of  the  Sanskrit  College  at  Banaras.  As 
I found  no  traces  of  burnt  wood,  I am  inclined  to  believe 
that  the  roof  of  the  building  was  pyramidal,  and  that  the 
general  appearance  of  the  edifice  must  have  been  strikingly 
similar  to  that  of  the  great  temple  of  Brambanan,  depicted 
in  the  2nd  Volume  of  IlafHes’  Java. 

Whilst  engaged  in  excavating  the  walls  of  this  temple, 
I was  informed  by  Sangkar , Bajbhar  of  Singpur,  the  same 
man  who  had  pointed  out  to  me  the  position  of  the  relic  box 
in  Jagat  Singh’s  stupa,  that,  whilst  he  was  engaged  in  digging 
materials  for  Jagatganj,  the  workmen  had  come  upon  a very 
large  number  of  statues,  all  collected  together  in  a small 
building.  The  walls  were  pulled  down  and  the  bricks  were 
carried  away,  but  the  statues  were  left  untouched  in  their 
original  position.  I at  once  commenced  an  excavation  on 
the  spot  pointed  out  by  Sangkar,  which  was  only  a few  feet 
to  the  north  of  the  temple  just  described.  At  a depth  of  2 
feet  below  the  surface,  I found  about  60  statues  and  bas- 
reliefs  in  an  upright  position,  all  packed  closely  together 
within  a small  space  of  less  than  10  feet  square.  The  walls 
of  the  building  in  which  they  had  been  thus  deposited  had 
been  removed  as  stated  by  Sangkar,  but  the  remains  of  the 
foundation  showed  a small  place  of  only  11  feet  square  out- 
side. I made  a selection  of  the  more  perfect  figures  which, 
together  with  the  bas-reliefs,  I presented  to  the  Asiatic 


Plate  XXXIV. 

1.  Inscribed  Stone  extracted  from  Great  Stupa. 

^ & ') 

: T AT  ^ ‘ 

auft  TQVisy^xih  \ yzjnn_:\\< 

<k< — -A. 

2.  Letters  Aom  Masons  marks  on  Stones  of  Great  Stupa.  5arn§*b 

-f  - -H  - CO-  ■ rv\  U ■ . Y fi  In 

■ { E ■ ■ ■ • b • • q I rj  2 • ft  -I'  "h  5 

3.  On  Pedestal  of  Standing  Figure 

Xcxi  o£<*  ■fi'Ztti  f***a?“J*« 

* TJT 

4.  Base  of  Eas- Relief. 

A»3T)^Aijf  £-  3^T 

sn  -*r  ^ *2  r^?%’ 

f Back  of  Seated  Figure  of  Buddha. 

m ewtfl  3 H >r  *n<i 51^ v 
aoijl*  $1-3*1  mm  a ^Jisn^fasrs 

€.  Clay  Seal  from  Sarnath. 

7-  Squatted  Figure  of  Buddha. 

A.  Cuanicgh&m  del. 

Fhj^)zincogir.pKed  at  the  Surveys  General's  Office  Calcutta 



Society.  A sketch  of  the  principal  bas-relief,  which  represents 
the  four  great  events  in  the  career  of  Sakya  Muni,  has  been 
published  hv  M.  Eoucaux.*  A second  bas-relief  represents 
the  same  four  scenes,  hut  on  a smaller  scale.  A third  bas-relief, 
which  gives  only  three  scenes,  omitting  the  Nirvana,  has  a 
short  inscription  below  in  two  lines,  which  records  the  sculpture 
to  have  been  the  gift  of  Hari  Gupta.  The  characters  of  this 
inscription,  which  are  of  the  later  Gupta  type,  shows  that 
this  piece  of  sculpture  is  certainly  as  old  as  the  3rd  or  4th 
century.  A fourth  bas-relief  gives  five  scenes,  the  addi- 
tional scene  being  the  conception  of  Maya  Devi  on  the  ap- 
pearance of  the  Cliliaclanta  Elephant.  Some  of  the  seated 
figures  were  in  excellent  preservation,  and  more  particularly 
one  of  Buddha  the  Teacher,  which  was  in  perfect  condition, 
and  coloured  of  a warm  red  hue.  The  remaining  statues, 
upwards  of  40  in  number,  together  with  most  of  the  other 
carved  stones  which  I had  collected,  and  which  I left  Ivina: 
on  the  ground,  were  afterwards  carted  away  by  the  late  Mr. 
Davidson  and  thrown  into  the  Barna  Biver  under  the  bridge 
to  check  the  cutting  away  of  the  bed  between  the  arches. 

As  the  room  in  which  I found  all  these  sculptures  was 
only  a small  detached  building,  and  as  it  was  quite  close  to 
the  large  temple  which  I have  just  described,  I conclude  that 
the  whole  of  the  sculptures  must  have  belonged  to  the 
temple,  and  that  they  were  secreted  in  the  place  -where  I 
discovered  them,  during  a time  of  persecution,  when  the 
monks  were  obliged  to  abandon  their  monasteries  and  take 
refuge  in  Nepal.  This  conclusion  is  partly  borne  out  by  the 
fact  that  I found  no  statues  within  the  walls  of  the  temple 

To  the  north  of  the  temple,  at  a distance  of  26  feet,  my 
excavations  uncovered  a large  single  block  of  stone,  6 feet 
in  length,  by  3 feet  in  height,  and  the  same  in  thickness. 
The  stone  had  been  carefully  squared,  and  was  hollowed  out 
underneath,  forming  a small  chamber,  4 feet  in  length,  by 
2 feet  in  breadth,  and  the  same  in  height. f This  large  stone 
has  also  disappeared,  which  is  the  more  to  he  regretted,  as 
I think  it  highly  probable  that  it  was  the  celebrated  stone, 

Translation  of  the  Tibetan  History  of  Buddha,  Plate  I. 
t See  sketch  of  the  ruins  in  Plate  XXXII.,  letter  Q.  This  stone  has  nov.'  disappeared. 



described  by  Hwen  Tlisang,  on  which  Buddha  had  spread 
out  his  kashdya  to  dry  after  washing  it  in  the  neighbouring 
tank.  Certain  marks  on  the  stone  appeared  to  the  Bud- 
dhists to  represent  the  thread  lines  of  the  web  of  Buddha’s 
cloth  “ as  distinctly  as  if  they  had  been  chiselled.”  Devout 
Buddhists  offered  their  homage  before  the  stone  daily ; but 
whenever  heretics,  or  wicked  men,  crowded  round  the  stone 
in  a contemptuous  manner,  then  the  dragon  ( Ndga ) of  the 
neighbouring  tank  let  loose  upon  them  a storm  of  wind  and 

My  excavations  at  Sarnath.  were  brought  to  a close  sud- 
denly by  my  removal  to  Calcutta.  Luckily  I had  prepared 
plans  of  the  buildings  while  the  exhumation  was  going  on, 
for  nothing  whatever  now  remains  of  all  my  excavations, 
every  stone  and  every  brick  having  been  removed  long  ago. 

The  last  excavations  at  Sarnath  were  made  at  the  ex- 
pense of  Government  under  the  personal  superintendence  of 
Major  Kittoe.  On  his  departure  for  England  in  January 
1S53,  in  ill  health,  he  carried  away  all  his  measurements  and 
memoranda  for  the  purpose  of  compiling  an  account  of  his 
discoveries  for  publication.  His  continued  ill  health  and 
early  death  effectually  prevented  fulfilment  of  this  intention, 
and  no  one,  as  far  as  I can  learn,  knows  what  has  become  of 
his  papers.  His  drawings,  which  were  numerous  and  valu- 
able, were  sent  to  the  India  House  Museum  by  Mr.  Thomason. 
One  of  them  has  since  been  published  in  1855  by  Mr.  Eer- 
gusson,  and  another  in  1856  by  Mrs.  Spiers. f Major  Kittoe’s 
inscriptions  were  entrusted  to  the  charge  of  the  Asiatic 
Society  in  Calcutta,  evidently  in  deposit  for  the  sake  of  safety, 
as  he  hoped  to  return  again  to  India,  and  to  prepare  them 
for  publication  with  his  own  hand. 

My  account  of  Major  Kittoe’s  discoveries  must  neces- 
sarily be  brief,  as  the  only  information  which  I possess  is 
contained  in  along  letter  from  himself,  dated  19th  May  1852, 
and  in  Mr.  Thomas’  “ Note  on  the  excavations  at  Sarnath.”  X 
In  writing  to  Major  Kittoe  previously,  I had  mentioned  the 

* Julien’s  Hwen  Tlisang,  II.,  360. 

f See  “Handbook  of  Architecture,”  Vol.  I.,  p.  7,  and  “Life  in  Ancient  India,”  p.  267. 
I have  since  seen  these  drawings  in  the  Library  at  the  India  Office.  They  number  about 
150,  but  their  value  is  much  impaired  by  the  general  want  of  names  and  descriptive  titles. 

X Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1854,  p.  469. 



three  stupas  which  I had  myself  opened,  and  which  I have 
already  described.  In  reply  he  wrote — “ How  do  you  make 
out  three  towers  at  Sarnath  ? I make  out  four,  to  say  nothing 
of  innumerable  smaller  affairs  down  to  the  size  of  a walnut, 
which  I have  laid  bare.”  Attached  to  this  he  gave  a rough 
sketch  of  the  ground,  showing  the  position  of  the  fourth 
tower  to  be  immediately  to  the  north  of  Jagat  Singh’s  stupa, 
where  I have  accordingly  inserted  it,  on  his  authority,  in  my 
survey  of  the  ruins.  Further  on  he  writes — “ I have  laid 
bare  ehaityas  upon  chciityas , four  and  five  deep,  built  one  over 
the  other.”  In  another  place  he  describes  the  oblong  court- 
yard which  was  excavated  by  himself  at  a distance  of  125 
feet  to  the  westward  of  the  great  tower,  as  a “large  quad- 
rangle, or  hospital,  for  I have  found  pestles  and  mortars 
( sills  or  flat  stones  for  mashing),  loongas,  &c.,  &c.”  This  is 
the  quadrangle  marked  Z.  in  my  plan  of  the  ruins.  It  is  60 
feet  long  from  west  to  east,  and  42  feet  broad,  and  is  surround- 
ed by  a low  wall  3 feet  thick  and  T|  foot  high  above  the  level 
of  the  terraced  floor,  parts  of  which  still  remain.  Fixed  in 
this  wall  are  the  stumps  of  twelve  stone  pillars,  which  are 
split  in  all  directions  as  if  destroyed  by  fire.  I agree  with 
Major  Kittoe  in  thinking  that  this  quadrangle  is  probably 
the  ruin  of  a hospital. 

In  reply  to  a question  about  stone  umbrellas,  Major 
Kittoe  wrote  to  me  as  follows  : “I  have  got  hold  of  two,  one 
in  fragments  {burnt),  of  say  6 feet  diameter,  mushroom- 
shaped, and  another,  also  burnt,  but  not  broken,  elegantly 
carved  in  scroll  on  the  inside,  but  nearly  defaced  by  the  ac- 
tion of  saltpetre.” 

Of  the  great  tower  itself,  Major  Kittoe’s  opinion  was, 
that  “ the  arrangement  was  precisely  the  same  as  at  Kan  goon, 
rows  and  rows  of  small  temples,  umbrellas,  pillars,  &c.,  around 
the  great  tope.  They  all  run  north  and  south,  and  east  and 
west,  large  and  small.”  To  this  account  he  added  a small 
rough  sketch  showing  the  arrangement  of  the  smaller  stupas 
about  the  great  towrer.  This  sketch  I have  inserted  in  my 
survey  in  dotted  lines.*  Judging  from  the  arrangement  of  the 
subsidiary  buildings  about  the  great  stupas  of  Burmah  and 
Ladak,  with  which  I am  personally  acquainted,  I have  every 

t See  sketch,  of  the  ruins  in  Plate  XXXII. 



reason  to  accept  Major  Kittoe’s  sketch  as  a correct  outline 
of  wliat  lie  liad  liimself  ascertained  by  excavation ; but  as 
the  sketch  is  not  drawn  to  scale,  the  relative  sizes  and  dis- 
tances may  not,  perhaps,  be  quite  accurate. 

Of  bis  other  discoveries  he  wrote  as  follows  : “ I have 
got  fine  specimens  of  carved  bricks  and  two  heads  of  Buddha, 
made  of  pounded  brick  and  road-earth  coated  with  fine  shell 
lime,  in  beautiful  preservation.  I have  a fine  head  of  a 
female  in  white  marble  (partly  calcined),  and  a portion  of  the 
arm.  It  has  been  a nearly  life-size  figure  of  Pdrvati” 

It  will  have  been  observed  that  every  excavation  made 
near  Sarnath  has  revealed  traces  of  fire.  I myself  found 
charred  timber  and  half  burnt  grain.  The  same  things  were 
also  found  by  Major  Kittoe,  besides  the  evident  traces  of  fire 
on  the  stone  pillars,  umbrellas,  and  statues.  So  vividly  was 
the  impression  of  a great  final  catastrophe  by  fire  fixed  in 
Major  Kittoe’s  mind,  by  the  discoveries  made  during  his  ex- 
cavations that  he  thus  summed  up  his  conclusions  to  me  in  a 
few  words  : “ all  has  been  sacked  and  burnt , priests,  temples, 
idols,  all  together.  In  some  places,  bones,  iron,  timber,  idols, 
&c.,  are  all  fused  into  huge  heaps;  and  this  has  happened 
more  than  once.”  Major  Kittoe  repeated  this  opinion  in 
almost  the  same  words  when  I saw  him  at  Gwalior  in  Sep- 
tember 1852.  I will  recur  to  this  subject  again  before  I 
conclude  my  account  of  the  discoveries  at  Sarnath. 

On  Major  Kittoe’s  departure  from  Banaras,  the  excava- 
tions were  continued  at  first  under  Mr.  E.  Thomas,  and 
afterwards  under  Professor  EitzEdward  Hall.  To  the  former 
gentleman  we  are  indebted  for  a general  account  of  the  state 
of  the  excavations  at  the  time  of  his  assuming  charge,  and 
more  especially  for  a very  clear  and  interesting  description  of 
the  ancient  monastery  which  was  then  being  exhumed,  and  of 
the  various  articles  which  were  discovered  within  its  precincts. 
This  work  was  subsequently  completed  by  Mr.  Ilall,  and  I 
have  made  a plan  of  the  building  as  it  now  appears.*  Mr. 
Thomas  calls  it  an  “ old  Buddhist  monastery,”  and  with  this 
identification  I fully  agree.  According  to  nwen  Tlisang, 
there  were  no  less  than  30  monasteries  about  the  Deer  Park 
at  Banaras,  which  together  contained  3,000  monks,  or  an 
average  of  100  monks  each.  Now  the  building  under  review 

* See  Plate  XXXII.,  excavations  by  Major  Kittoe,  wliicli  were  afterwards  completed  by 
Mr.  Thomas  and  Dr.  Hall. 



contains  no  less  than  28  separate  apartments,  and  if  one  of 
these  he  set  aside  as  a shrine  for  a statue  of  Buddha,  and  a 
second  as  a hall  for  teaching,  there  Trill  remain  26  cells  for 
the  accommodation  of  monks.  Again,  judging  from  the 
thickness  of  the  walls,  I am  of  opinion  that  the  building 
could  not  have  been  less  than  3 or  4 storeys  in  height. 
Assuming  the  latter  to  have  been  the  actual  height,  the 
building  would  have  contained  104  cells,  and,  therefore,  may 
possibly  have  been  one  of  the  30  monasteries  noted  by  Hwen 

The  ground  plan  of  the  monastery  shews  a central 
court  50  feet  square,  surrounded  by  pillars  which  must  have 
supported  an  open  verandah  or  cloister  in  front  of  the  four 
ranges  of  cells.  In  the  north-east  corner  of  the  court-yard 
there  is  an  old  well,  4 feet  10  inches  in  diameter,  and  37  feet 
deep.  As  this  well  is  placed  on  one  side,  I infer  that  the 
middle  of  the  court  was  occupied  by  a stupa  or  a statue,  or 
more  probably,  perhaps,  by  a holy  tree,  as  I could  not  find 
any  traces  of  the  foundation  of  a building.  On  the  outside,  the 
building  is  107  feet  square.  In  the  centre  room  on  the  north 
side,  which  is  18  feet  in  length,  there  are  two  large  stones 
placed  against  the  walls  as  if  intended  for  the  reception  of 
statues.  This  also  was  Mr.  Thomas’  opinion.  This  room, 
I believe,  to  have  been  the  shrine  of  the  monastery.  In  the 
centre  room  on  the  south  side  there  is  a “ square,  elaborately 
corniced  block,”  which  Mr.  Thomas  believed  to  have  been 
the  throne  for  a seated  figure  of  Buddha.  I incline,  however, 
to  the  .opinion  that  this  was  the  seat  of  the  teacher  for  the 
daily  reading  and  expounding  of  the  Buddhist  Scriptures. 
The  cells  on  each  side  of  these  two  central  rooms  are  some- 
what larger  than  those  on  the  eastern  and  western  sides  of  the 
court,  and  were,  therefore,  probably  assigned  to  the  senior 
monks.  The  common  cells  are  8 \ feet  by  S feet,  and  each 
has  a separate  door. 

The  ground  plan  of  this  monastery  is  similar  to  that  of 
the  large  caves  at  Bagh  and  Ajanta,  sketches  of  which  have 
been  given  by  Mr.  Pergusson.*  The  plan  is  in  fact  almost 
identical  with  that  of  the  Bagh  Cave,  the  only  difference 
being  the  want  of  cells  in  the  cave  monastery  on  the  side 

* Handbook  of  Architecture,  I.,  pp.  33,  34. 



opposite  to  the  sanctuary,  which  was  necessarily  left  open  for 
the  sake  of  affording  light  to  the  interior.  The  great  cave 
at  Junir  is  also  similar  in  plan,  hut  it  is  apparently  of  older 
date,  as  it  wants  the  sanctuary  opposite  the  entrance. 

The  destruction  of  this  large  monastery  would  appear  to 
have  been  both  sudden  and  unexpected,  for  Mr.  Thomas 
records  that  Major  Kittoe  found  “the  remains  of  ready- 
made wheaten  cakes  in  a small  recess  in  the  chamber  to- 
wards the  north-east  angle  of  the  square.”  Mr.  Thomas  him- 
self also  found  portions  of  wheat  and  other  grain  spread  out 
in  one  of  the  cells.  These  discoveries  would  seem  to  show 
that  the  conflagration  had  been  so  sudden  and  rapid  as  to  force 
the  monks  to  abandon  their  very  food.  Such  also  is  Mr. 
Thomas’  opinion,  conveyed  in  the  following  vivid  descrip- 
tion: “The  chambers  on  the  eastern  side  of  the  square  were 
“ found  filled  with  a strange  medley  of  uncooked  food,  hastily 
“ abandoned  on  their  floors, — pottery  of  every-day  life,  nodes 
“ of  brass  produced  apparently  by  the  melting  down  of  the 
“ cooking  vessels  in  common  use.  Above  these  again  were 
“ the  remnants  of  the  charred  timbers  of  the  roof,  with  iron 
“ nails  still  remaining  in  them,  above  which  again  appeared 
“ broken  bricks  mixed  with  earth  and  rubbish  to  the  height 
“ of  the  extant  walls,  some  6 feet  from  the  original  flooring. 
“ Every  item  here  bore  evidence  of  a complete  conflagration, 
“ and  so  intense  seems  to  have  .been  the  heat  that,  in 
“ portions  of  the  wall  still  standing,  the  clay  which  formed 
“ the  substitute  for  lime  in  binding  the  brick- work  is  baked 
“ to  a similar  consistency  with  the  bricks  themselves.  In 
“ short,  all  existing  indications  lead  to  a necessary  inference 
“ that  the  destruction  of  the  building,  by  whomsoever  caused, 
“ was  effected  by  fire  applied  by  the  hand  of  an  exterminating 
“ adversary,  rather  than  by  any  ordinary  accidental  con- 
“ flagration.”* 

This  opinon  was  expressed  by  Mr.  Thomas  in  1854, 
before  the  whole  of  the  monastery  had  been  exhumed.  A 
later  account  has  since  been  published  by  Dr.  Butter  in  1856, 
who  stated  his  opinion  that  “ the  burnt  grain  and  masses 
of  half  fused  iron  discovered  by  Mr.  II all  corroborate  the 

* Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1854,  p.  472. 



conclusions  drawn  by  previous  explorers,  that  the  monastery 
bad  been  destroyed  by  fire.”* 

During  my  stay  at  Banaras,  I examined  tbe  collection 
of  articles  found  by  Professor  Hall  in  the  various  excavations 
which  he  conducted  at  Sarnftth,  and  which  are  now  deposited 
in  the  Museum  of  the  College.  The  only  article  requiring 
special  notice  is  No.  18,  an  impression  in  burnt  clay,  of  a seal 
lij  inch  in  diameter  with  two  lines  of  Sanskrit,  surmounted 
by  a lozenge-shaped  device,  with  two  recumbent  deer  as  sup- 
porters. The  device  of  the  two  deer  is  significant,  as  it  no 
doubt  shows  that  the  seal  must  have  belonged  to  some 
person  or  establishment  attached  to  the  monastery  of 
the  Deer  Park.  The  end  of  the  upper  line  and  the  whole 
of  the  lower  line  of  the  inscription  are  too  much  injured  to 
be  made  out  satisfactorily.  The  inscription  begins  with  the 
word  Sri  Saddharmma,  “ the  auspicious  true  Dharmma ,”  and 
the  letters  at  the  end  of  the  first  line  look  very  like  Uakshita 
the  “ Preserver.”  This  would  be  a man’s  name  Sri  Sad - 
dharmma  Uakshita,  “ the  Cherisher  of  the  true  Dharmma,” 
a title  not  uncommon  amongst  the  Buddhists.  Of  the  lower 
line  I am  unable  to  suggest  any  probable  rendering. 

In  the  absence  of  any  general  plan  of  the  ruins,  showing 
the  extent  of  the  explorations  carried  on  by  Major  Kittoe 
and  his  successors,  I do  not  think  it  would  be  advisable  to 
undertake  any  further  excavations  at  Sarnath,  Banaras;  I 
have  already  suggested  that  the  ground  immediately  around 
the  great  tower  should  be  levelled  for  the  purpose  of  affording 
easy  acc.ess  to  visitors. f In  carrying  out  this  operation,  every 
fragment  of  sculpture  should  be  carefully  preserved,  as  I 
think  it  very  probable  that  some  portions  of  the  statues, 
which  once  adorned  the  eight  niches  of  the  great  tower,  may 
be  discovered  in  the  masses  of  rubbish  now  lying  in  heaps  at 
its  foot.  It  might,  perhaps,  be  worth  while  to  make  a few 
tentative  excavations  in  the  mass  of  ruins  to  the  north  and 
north-west  of  the  great  tower,  by  digging  long  narrow 
trenches  from  west  to  east,  and  from  north  to  south.  Should 
these  trenches  uncover  the  remains  of  any  large  buildings. 

* Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  185G,  p.  39G. 

t Tliis  clearance  of  the  ruins  around  the  great  stupa  has  since  been  made  by 
Mr.  Horne,  to  a breadth  of  25  feet. 




the  work  might  then,  he  continued.  But  should  nothing 
promising  he  discovered,  I would  recommend  the  immediate 
stoppage  of  the  work. 

Since  this  report  was  written,  the  Reverend  Mr.  Shcrring 
has  published  a very  full  and  interesting  account  of  Banaras, 
in  which  a whole  chapter  is  dedicated  to  the  Buddhist  ruins 
at  Sarnath.*  In  Appendix  B.  he  has  also  given  a transla- 
tion of  Ilwen  Thsang’s  description  of  the  holy  places  at 
Banaras,  which  is  a most  valuable  addition,  as  M.  Julien’s 
French  translation  is  not  easily  procurable. 

* See  Chapter  XVIII.,  p.  230  of  “ The  Sacred  City  of  the  Hindus,”  an  account  of 
Banaras  in  ancient  and  modern  times, — by  the  Reverend  M.  A.  Shcrring,  with  an  introduc- 
tion by  Fitz  Edward  Hall,  Esq. 

Report  of  Operations  of  the  Archaeological  Surveyor  to  the  Government  of 
India  during  season  1862-63. 


In  A.  D.  634,  when  the  Chinese  pilgrim  Ewen  Thsang 
crossed  the  Satlaj  from  the  westward,  the  first  place  that  he 
visited  was  Po-li-ye-to-lo,  or  Pariyatra , which  has  been  iden- 
tified by  M.  St.  Martin  with  Vairat,  to  the  northward  of 
Jay  pur.  This  place  I have  not  yet  visited,  as  my  explora- 
tions during  the  cold  season  of  1862-63  were  confined  to 
Delhi,  Matlmra,  and  Khalsi,  on  the  line  of  the  Jumna  and 
to  the  ancient  cities  lying  north  of  that  river  in  the  Gangefic 
Doab,  Oudh,  and  Itokilkkand.  In  these  provinces,  I have 
followed  Hwen  Thsang’ s route  from  Matlmra  to  Srdvasti ; 
and,  with  his  aid,  I have  been  successful  in  discovering  the 
once  famous  cities  of  Ahi-chhatra , Kosdmbi,  Shdchi,  and 
Srdvasti.  The  sites  of  other  celebrated  places  have  likewise 
been  determined  with  almost  equal  certainty,  as  Srughna, 
Madipur,  Govisana,  Pilosana,  Kusapura , and  Dhopapapnra. 
I begin  the  account  of  my  explorations  at  Delhi,  which  is 
the  only  place  of  note  not  visited  hy  the  Chinese  pilgrim, 
whose  route  I take  up  at  Mathura,  and  follow  throughout 
Bnhilkhand,  the  Doah,  and  Oudh.  The  places  visited  during 
this  tour  are  accordingly  described  in  the  following  order : 

I.  Delhi. 

II.  Mathura. 

III.  Khalsi. 

IV,  Madawar,  or  Madipur. 

V.  Kashipur,  or  Govisana. 

VI.  ltamnagar,  or  Ahi-chhatra. 

VII.  Soron,  or  Sukrakshctra. 

VIII.  Atranjikhera,  or  Pilosana. 

IX.  Sankisa,  or  Sangkasya. 

X,  Kanoj,  or  Kanyakubja. 

XI.  Kakupur,  or  Ayuto. 

XII.  Daundiakkera,  or  Mayamukha , 

XIII.  Allahabad,  or  Praydga . 




Kosam,  or  Kosdmbi. 


Sultanpur,  or  Kusapurci. 




Ajudhya,  or  Sdketci. 


Ilatila,  or  Asokpur. 


Sahet-Mahet,  or  Sravasti, 










Parasua  Kot. 






The  remains  of  Delhi  arc  graphically  described  by  Bishop 
Ileber*  as  “ a very  awful  scene  of  desolation,  ruins  after 
ruins,  tombs  after  tombs,  fragments  of  brick-work,  free- 
stone,  granite,  and  marble,  scattered  everywhere  over  a soil 
“ naturally  rocky  and  barren,  without  cultivation,  except  in 
ee  one  or  two  small  spots,  and  without  a single  tree.”  This 
waste  of  ruins  extends  from  the  south  end  of  the  present 
city  of  Shahjahanabad  to  the  deserted  forts  of  llai  Pithora 
and  Tughlakabad,  a distance  of  10  miles.  The  breadth  at 
the  northern  end,  opposite  Piruz  Shah’s  Kotila,  is  about  3 
miles,  and  at  the  southern  end,  from  the  Kutb  Minar  to 
Tughlakabad,  it  is  rather  more  than  6 miles ; the  whole  area 
covered  with  ruins  being  not  less  than  45  square  miles.  It 
is  most  probable,  however,  that  not  more  than  a third  of  this 
extent  was  ever  occupied  at  any  one  period,  as  the  present 
ruins  are  the  remains  of  seven  cities,  which  were  built  at 
different  times  by  seven  of  the  old  Kings  of  Delhi. f 

Other  forts  are  recorded  to  have  been  built  by  the 
Emperors  Balban,  Kai-Kubad,  and  Mubarak;  but  there  are 
no  remains  of  them  now  existing,  and  the  very  sites  of  them 
are  doubtful.  It  seems  even  probable  that  there  were  no 
remains  of  these  three  cities  so  far  back  as  A.  D.  1611,  in 
the  reign  of  Jahangir,  when  the  English  merchant,  William 
Pinch,  travelling  from  Agra  to  Delhi,  entered  the  Mogul 

* Journal  II.,  page  290. 

+ Sec  Plate  No.  XXXV.  for  a map  of  tlio  ruins  at  Delhi. 


Plate  “XXXV. 

Strtie.  Pillar 




Jar-ozt'  1 r 

3Gz&ji<L-  »f  ^ 


/ W Kubxdi 



% 0& 

\v^PURAN A *K  IL; 

f.  Tomb 


Mansur  Ml  ] 




Ffouax.  Alar 

Ham,  KhrLs1 

' TargaJu  .J 

' * Shrkk. 

jahmN  -PANRH  .tela* 

/ ray  ^ 




r4i^-LUGH  LAKABAt* 


-y  W&utbL 

\ kAMaharclh 

TiuJhLzkk  Tomb 




Capital  from  (lie  south,  for  ho  states  that  on  his  left  hand  he 
saw  the  ruins  of  “old  Delhi , ccdled  the  7 castles  and  52 
gates ,”  a name  by  which  these  ruins  are  still  known  in  the 
present  day.  With  regard  to  the  work  of  the  Emperor 
Ghias-uddin-JBalban,  who  reigned  from  A.  D.  12G6  to  1288, 
I think  that  too  great  importance  has  been  attached  to  its 
name  of  Kila  or  fort.  The  Kila  Marzghan , which  Syad 
Ahmed  places  at  Ghidspur , near  the  tomb  of  Nizdm-uddm 
Aidia , was  built  as  an  asylum,  marja , or  place  of  refuge  for 
debtors.  Now,  this  asylum  for  debtors  was  still  existing  in 
A.  D.  1335  to  1340,  when  Ibn  Eatuta  was  one  of  the  Ma- 
gistrates of  Delhi.  He  describes  it  as  the  Ddr-id-aman , or 
“ House  of  Safety,”  and  states  that  he  visited  the  tomb  of 
Balban,  which  was  inside  this  house.  From  this,  as  well  as 
from  its  name  of  Ddr-ul-aman,  I infer  that  the  building  was 
a walled  enclosure  of  moderate  size,  perhaps  not  much  larger 
than  that  which  now  surrounds  the  tomb  of  Tughlak  Shah. 
This  inference  is  rendered  almost  certain  by  Ibn  Eatuta’s 
description  of  Delhi,*  which,  he  says,  “ now  consists  of  four 
cities,  which  becoming  contiguous,  have  formed  one  A Now 
three  of  the  four  cities  here  alluded  to  are  certainly  those  of 
Dai  Dithora , Jahcm-pandh , and  Sen  (of  which  the  continuous 
walls  can  be  easily  traced  even  at  the  present  day),  and  the 
fourth  city  must  have  been  Tughlakabad.  No  particular  date 
can  be  assigned  to  Jahan-panah  which  was  an  open  suburb 
until  the  time  of  Muhammad  Tughlak,  who  first  enclosed  it 
with  walls  ; but  as  Ibn  Eatuta  was  one  of  the  Magistrates  of 
Delhi  under  this  Emperor,  it  is  certain  that  Jahan-panah  must 
have  been  one  of  the  four  cities  described  by  him.  I feel 
quite  satisfied,  therefore,  that  the  Kila-Marzghan,  called  also 
Ddr-ul-aman , or  “House  of  Refuge,” was  not  a fortress,  or 
large  fortified  city,  but  only  a small  walled  enclosure  sur- 
rounding his  own  tomb,  and  forming,  at  the  same  time, 
a place  sufficiently  large  as  an  asylum  for  debtors  and 

The  city  of  Kai-Kubad,  called  Kilu-ghari , was  certainly 
situated  on  the  bank  of  the  Jumna,!  where  the  name  is  still 

* Travels,  translated,  by  Dr.  Lee,  p.  111. 

t Gladwin’ a Ain  Akbari,  II.,  p.  80  ; and  Briggs’s  Ferishta,  I.,  p.  274. 



found  attached  to  a small  village  on  the  south-east  of  Huma- 
yun’s  tomb.  The  new  city  of  Mubarak,  named  Mubarakabad, 
was  also  situated  on  the  bank  of  the  Jumna.* 

The  “ seven  forts”  of  old  Delhi,  of  which  remains  still 
exist,  are,  according  to  my  view,  the  following : 

1.  — Lalkot,  built  by  Anang  Pal  about  A.  D.  1052. 

2.  — Kila  Ecu  Dithora , built  by  Itai  Pithora  about  A.  D. 


3.  — Siri,  or  Kila- Alai,  built  by  Ala-uddin  in  A.  D.  1304. 

4.  — TughlaJcabad,  built  by  Tughlak  Shah  in  A.  D.  1321. 

5.  — Citadel  of  Tughlakabad,  ditto  ditto. 

G. — Adilabad , built  by  Muhammad  Tughlak  about  A.  D. 


7. — Jalidn-Dandh , enclosed  by  ditto. 

In  this  list  there  is  no  mention  of  Indraprastha,  because  this 
celebrated  capital  of  the  Pandus  is  always  described  as  being 
situated  on  the  hank  of  the  J umna,  which  would  have  been 
on  the  right  hand  of  the  English  traveller,  and  because  the 
present  fort  of  Indrapat,  no  doubt,  represents  some  portion  of 
the  actual  site,  as  well  as  the  name  of  the  famous  city  of 
Yudhishthira.  Indraprastha  and  Delhi  were,  therefore,  two 
different  cities,  situated  about  5 miles  apart, — the  former 
on  the  bank  of  the  Jumna  above  Humavun’s  tomb, 
and  the  latter  on  a rocky  hill  to  the  south-west,  sur- 
rounding the  well  known  Iron  Pillar.  At  the  time  of  the 
Muhammadan  conquest,  the  Hindu  city  of  Dilli  was  confined 
to  the  two  forts  of  Lalkot  and  Pai  Pithora ; but  after  Eiruz 
Shah  had  moved  the  seat  of  Government  to  Eiruzabad  on  the 
very  site  of  the  ancient  Indraprastha,  the  name  of  Dilli  was 
some  times  applied  to  the  whole  of  the  old  city,  including  the 
Musalman  fort  of  Siri  and  the  fortified  suburbs  of  Jahdn- 
panah.  Sharf-uddin,  the  historian  of  Timur,  restricts  the 
name  of  old  Delhi  to  the  two  Hindu  forts,  and  describes  the 
cities  of  Siri  and  Jahdn-pandh  separately.  Eerishta  also 
does  the  same  in  his  account  of  the  latter  kings  of  the 
Tughlak  dynasty.  But  after  Humayun  had  re-built  Indrapat, 

* Briggs’s  Ferislita.  I.,  p.  5 829  ; see  also  the  contemporary  statement  of  the  author  of 
the  Tarikh-i-Mubarak  Shiihi,  quoted  by  Mr.  Thomas — “ Chronicles  of  the  Pathan  Kings, 
p.  332,  note. 



under  tlie  name  of  Din-panah,  and  after  Sliir  Shah  had 
founded  his  fort  of  Kila- Shir- Shah  on  the  site  of  Eiruzabad 
and  Indraprastha,  the  common  people  began  to  use  the  names 
of  old  Delhi  and  new  Delhi — the  former  being  confined  to 
the  cluster  of  cities  about  the  Hindu  Dilli,  while  the  latter 
was  applied  to  those  situated  on  the  Jumna,  on  the  site 
of  the  ancient  Indraprastha. 

Indraprastha  or  Indrapat. — At  the  time  of  the  Malm - 
hlidrata , or  “ Great  War”  between  the  Pandus  and  Kurus, 
this  was  one  of  the  well  known  five  pats  or  prasthas  which 
were  demanded  from  Duryodlian  by  Yudhisthira  as  the  price 
of  peace.  These  five  pats  which  still  exist,  were  Tdnipat 
Sonpat , Indr  pat,  Tilpat,  and  Bdghpat,  of  which  all  but 
the  last  were  situated  on  the  right  or  western  bank  of  the 
Jumna.  The  term  prastha,  according  to  H.  H.  Wilson, 
means  anything  “spread  out  or  extended,”  and  is  commonly 
applied  to  any  level  piece  of  ground,  including  also  table- 
land on  the  top  of  a hill.  But  its  more  literal  and  restricted 
meaning  would'  appear  to  be  that  particular  extent  of  land 
which  would  require  a prastha  of  seed,  that  is,  48  double 
handfulls,  or  about  48  imperial  pints,  or  two-thirds  of  a 
bushel.  This  was,  no  doubt,  its  original  meaning,  but  in  the 
lapse  of  time  it  must  gradually  have  acquired  the  meaning, 
which  it  still  has,  of  any  good  sized  piece  of  open  plain. 
Indraprastha  would,  therefore,  mean  the  plain  of  Indra,  which 
was,  I presume,  the  name  of  the  person  who  first  settled 
there.  Popular  tradition  assigns  the  five  pats  to  the  five 
Pandu  brothers. 

The  date  of  the  occupation  of  Indraprastha  as  a capi- 
tal by  Judhisthira,  may,  as  I believe,  be  attributed,  with 
some  confidence,  to  the  latter  half  of  the  15tli  century  before 
Christ.  The  grounds  on  which  I base  this  belief  are  as 
follows  : 1st,  that  certain  positions  of  the  planets,  as  record- 
ed in  the  Mahdblidrata , are  shown  by  Bentley  to  have  taken 
place  in  1824-25  B.  C.,  who  adds  that  “ there  is  no  other 
year,  either  before  that  period  or  since,  in  which  they  were 
so  situated ;”  2nd,  in  the  Vishnu  Purana  it  is  stated  that  at 
the  birth  of  Burikshita,  the  son  of  Arjuna  Bdndava,  the 
seven  Bishis  were  in  Maghd , and  that  when  they  are  in 
Buna  Ashdrha  Nanda  will  begin  to  reign.  Now,  as  the 
seven  Bishis,  or  stars  of  the  Great  Bear,  are  supposed  to 
pass  from  one  lunar  asterism  to  another  in  100  years,  the 



interval  between  Parikshita  and  Xanda  will  be  ] ,000  years. 
Put  in  the  Bhagavata  Purana  this  interval  is  said  to  be  1,015 
years,  which  added  to  100  years,  the  duration  of  the  reigns 
of  the  nine  Xandas,  will  place  the  birth  of  Parikshita  1,115 
years  before  the  accession  of  Chandra  Gupta  in  315  B.  C., 
that  is,  in  1430  B.  C.  By  this  account  the  birth  of  JParik- 
shita,  the  son  of  Arjuna,  took  place  just  six  years  before  the 
Great  War  in  B.  C.  1424.  These  dates,  which  arc  derived  from 
two  independent  sources,  mutually  support  each  other,  and 
therefore  seem  to  me  to  be  more  worthy  of  credit  than  any 
other  Hindu  dates  of  so  remote  a period. 

Indraprastha,  the  city  of  Yudhisthira,  was  built  along 
the  bank  of  the  River  Jumna  between  the  Kotila  of  Piruz 
Shah  and  the  tomb  of  Humayun.  At  that  time  the  river 
flowed  upwards  of  one  mile  to  the  westward  of  its  present 
course,  and  the  old  bed  is^  still  easily  traceable  from  Piruz 
Shah’s  Kotila,  past  Indrpat  and  Humayun’s  tomb  to  Kila 
Ghari.  The  last  place  was  on  the  immediate  bank  of  the 
river,  so  late  as  the  reign  of  Kaikubad  in  A.  1).  1290,  as  his 
assassins  are  reported  to  have  thrown  his  body  out  of  the 
palace  window  into  the  Jumna.  The  name  of  Indraprastha 
is  still  preserved  in  that  of  Indrpat,  a small  fort,  which  is 
also  known  by  the  name  of  Parana  Kila  or  the  “ old  fort.” 
This  place  was  repaired  by  the  Emperor  Ilumayun,  who 
changed  its  name  to  Din-p&nah ; but  none,  save  educated 
Musalmans  ever  make  use  of  this  name,  as  the  common 
people  invariably  call  it  either  Indrpat  or  Purana  Kila.  In 
its  present  form,  this  place  is  altogether  a Muhammadan 
structure ; and  I do  not  believe  that  there  now  exists  even 
a single  carved  stone  of  the  original  city  of  Yudhisthira. 
The  only  spot  that  has  any  claim  to  have  belonged  to  the 
ancient  city  is  a place  of  pilgrimage  on  the  Jumna  called 
Nigamhbod  Ghat,  which  is  immediately  outside  the  northern 
wall  of  the  city  of  Shahjahdndbad.  This  ghat  is  celebrated 
as  the  place  where  Yudhisthira,  after  his  performance  of  the 
Aswamedha,  or  “ horse  sacrifice,”  celebrated  the  Horn.  A fair 
is  held  at  Xigambod  whenever  the  new  moon  falls  on  a 
Monday.  It  is  said  to  be  held  in  honor  of  the  River  Jumna. 

According  to  the  Bhagavata  Purana,  Yudhisthira  was 
the  first  King  of  Indraprastha,  and  the  throne  was  occupied 
by  the  descendants  of  his  brother  Arjuna  for  30  generations 
down  to  Ksliemaka.  This  last  prince  was  deposed,  according 



to  all  tlie  copies  of  the  Rajavali,  by  his  Minister  Visarwa,  of 
whose  family  14  persons  are  said  to  have  held  the  throne  for 
500  years.  They  were  succeeded  by  a dynasty  of  15  Gciuta- 
mas,  or  Gotama-vansas,  who  were  followed  by  a family  of 
nine  Mciyuras.  JEtaja-pala,  the  last  of  the  Mayuras,  is  stated 
to  have  been  attacked  and  killed  by  the  Raja  of  Kurnaon, 
named  Sakdditya,  or  “ Lord  of  the  Sakas.”  But  this  was 
only  the  title,  and  not  the  name,  of  the  conqueror;  for 
Vikramaditya  is  said  to  have  obtained  his  title  of  Salcari  by 
defeating  him. 

At  this  point  of  the  traditional  histories,  the  name  of 
Dilli makes  its  first  appearance;*  but  nothing  is  recorded 
regarding  the  change  of  name,  and  we  are  left  to  conjecture 
whether  the  city  of  Dilli  had  already  been  founded,  or  whether 
this  name  has  been  used  instead  of  that  of  Indraprastha 
through  simple  inadvertence.  According  to  one  tradition, 
which  is  but  little  known,  the  city  of  Dilli  was  founded  by 
Raja  Dilipa,  who  was  the  ancestor  in  the  fifth  generation  of 
the  five  Pandu  brothers.  But  this  story  may  be  dismissed  at 
once  as  an  ignorant  invention,  as  Dilli  is  universally 
acknowledged  to  be  of  much  later  date  than  Indraprastha,  the 
city  of  Yudhisthira  himself. 

According  to  a popular  and  well  known  tradition,  Dilli 
or  Dhili,  was  built  by  Raja  Dilu,  or  Dliilu,  whose  date  is  quite 
uncertain.  This  tradition  was  adopted  by  Perishta,  who 
adds  that  Raja  Dilu , after  a reign  of  either  4 or  40  years, 
was  attacked  and  killed  by  Raja  Dhur,  or  Porus,  of  Kurnaon, 
who  was  • the  antagonist  of  Alexander  the  Great.  If  this 
statement  could  be  depended  upon,  it  might  perhaps  be 
entitled  to  some  consideration,  as  giving  the  probable  period 
of  the  foundation  of  Dilli.  But  unfortunately  Perishta’s 
ancient  chronology  is  a mere  jumble  of  errors;  thus,  for 
instance,  Phur’s  nephew,  Juna,  who  should  have  been  a con- 
temporary of  Seleukos  Nikator,  is  said  to  be  a contemporary 
of  Ardashir  Babekan,  the  founder  of  the  Sassanian  dynasty 
in  A.  D.  226.  But  Ardashir  himself  is  afterwards  made  a 
contemporary  of  Vikramaditya  of  Ujain  in  57  B.  C.  The 
most  probable  explanation  of  these  different  dates  would  seem 

* In  Chand’s  Prithi-Raj -Raisa,  the  name  is  invariably  written  Dillt,  with  the  first  vowel 
short,  and  the  other  long.  In  one  place  I have  found  the  city  called  Dillipur,  which  might 
as  probably  be  derived  from  Diilip  as  from  Dilu, 




to  be  some  confusion  regarding  tbc  name  of  Ardashir,  and 
perhaps  the  safest  plan  will  be  to  accept  the  author’s  last 
statement,  that  11a j a Dilu  was  a contemporary  of  Vikrama- 

Now  the  story  of  Dilu , and  of  his  defeat  by  Phur,  Raja 
of  Kumaon,  is  exactly  the  same  as  that  of  Raja  Reel, 
King  of  Dilli,  and  of  his  defeat  by  Sukwcinti  (or  Sukdat 
or  Sukaditya),  Raja  of  Kumaon,  as  related  in  several 
different  copies  of  the  Rajavali.  As  in  all  of  these  the  in- 
vader is  said  to  have  been  defeated  and  slain  by  Vikrama- 
ditya  Sakari,  the  date  of  this  event  must  be  assigned  either 
to  57  B.  C.  or  to  A.  D.  79.  The  latter  date  is  the  true  one, 
according  to  Abu  Rihan ; and  as  Sakaditya  is  said  to  have 
reigned  14  years  in  Dilli,  his  conquest  must  have  taken  place 
in  A.  D.  65.  I confess,  however,  that  I have  but  little  faith 
in  the  dates  of  any  Hindu  traditionary  stories,  unless  they 
can  be  supported  by  other  testimony.  That  the  city  of  Dilli 
was  founded  by  a Raja  of  similar  name,  is  probable  enough, 
for  it  is  the  common  custom  of  India,  even  at  the  present 
day,  to  name  places  after  their  founders.  But  there  is  un- 
fortunately so  much  uncertainty  about  the  dates  in  all  the 
stories  connected  with  the  foundation  of  Dilli,  that  it  is 
difficult  to  form  any  satisfactory  conclusion  as  to  the 

According  to  Kharg  Rai,  the  Gwalior  Bhat,  who  wrote 
in  the  reign  of  Shahjalian,  the  last  Pandu  Prince,  named 
Nildghpati , was  King  of  Dilli  when  3000  years  of  the  Kali- 
yuga  had  expired,  that  is,  in  101  B.  C.  In  that  year  he  was 
attacked  by  a Raghuvansi  Raja,  named  Sankhdhwaj,  with 
whom  he  fought  17  battles,  but  was  eventually  defeated  and 
killed  after  a reign  of  44  years,  which  brings  us  to  57  B.  C. 
Sankhdhwaj  bimself  is  said  to  have  been  defeated  and  killed  by 
the  famous  Vikramaditya  of  Ujain,  who  thus  became  King 
of  Dilli  (Dilli-pat-kahayo).  His  descendants  are  recorded 
to  have  reigned  in  Ujain  for  792  years,  during  the  whole  of 
which  time  Dilli  was  deserted  (ujarh  raid).  At  the  end  of 
these  792  years,  or  in  792  — 56f  = 735J  years  complete,  or 
A.  D.  736,  Dilli  was  re-peopled  by  Bilan  De  Tomar , whose 
descendants  occupied  the  throne  until  displaced  by  the  Clio- 
hans  under  Bisal  De,  who  is  no  doubt  the  Visala  Deva  of  the 
two  inscriptions  on  Piruz  Shah’s  Pillar. 



In  this  account  of  Kliarg  Rai,  I recognize  another  ver- 
sion of  the  former  story  of  the  Raja  of  Dilli  being  overcome 
by  the  King  of  the  Sakas,  who  was  himself  afterwards  de- 
feated hy  Yikramaditya.  The  name  of  Sankhdhwaj  would 
appear  to  be  only  a misreading  either  of  Sakwant , or  of  Sak- 
dat  or  Sakaditya ; hut  Nildgh-pali  is  quite  unlike  Raja  Pal, 
although  it  might  be  a mistake  for  Tilak  pati,  and  would 
thus,  perhaps,  have  some  connection  with  the  name  of  Raja 

I think  also  that  I can  recognize  another  version  of 
the  same  legend  in  the  story  of  Basal,  King  of  Hind,  and 
his  sons  Rawal  and  Barkamarys,  as  preserved  in  the  Mojmal- 
ut-tawarikh  of  Rashiduddin.*  In  this  version  King  Rasal, 
whom  I would  conjecturally  identify  with  Raja  Pal  of  the 
Rajavali,  is  driven  from  his  throne  by  a rebel,  who  is  after- 
wards conquered  by  Barkamarys,  a name  in  which,  though 
slightly  altered,  I still  recognize  the  famous  Bikramddit  or 

The  overthrow  of  the  Sakas  is  universally  attributed  to 
the  Yikramaditya  who  assumed  the  title  of  Sakdri,  and 
established  the  era  which  still  bears  his  name,  beginning  in 
57  B.  G.  But  if  the  prince  who  founded  this  era  was  a con- 
temporary of  Pravarasena,  Raja  of  Kashmir,  and  of  the 
poet  Kalidasa,  as  well  as  of  the  Astronomer  Yaraka  Mikira, 
as  there  seems  good  reason  to  believe,  it  is  quite  certain  that 
he  cannot  be  dated  earlier  than  the  beginning  of  the  sixth 
century  ,of  the  Christian  era.  This  conclusion  is  supported 
by  the  strong  testimony  of  Abu  Rikan,  who  states  that  the 
great  victory  over  the  Sakas  was  gained  at  a place  called 
Koror,  between  Multan  and  Loni,  by  a prince  named  Yik- 
ramaditya, just  135  years  after  the  prince  of  the  same  name 
who  founded  the  Yikrama  Samvat.  As  the  date  of  this 
event  corresponds  exactly  with  the  initial  point  of  the 
Sake-era,  which  was  established  hy  Sdlivahana,  it  results  that 
the  Yikramaditya  of  Abu  Rikan  is  identical  with  the  Sali- 
vahana  of  the  popular  Indian  traditions.  This  conclusion 
is  further  strengthened  by  the  fact  that  in  Colonel  James 
Abbott’s  list  of  the  Rajas  of  Syalkot,  a reign  of  90  years 
is  assigned  to  Salivakana,  which  is  exactly  the  same  as  is 

# Remaud,  “Fragments  Arabes,”  &e.,  p.  47. 



allotted  to  Vikramaditya,  tlie  conqueror  of  tlie  Sakas,  in  all 
tlie  seven  copies  of  the  Rajavali  that  I have  seen.  On  these 
grounds,  I venture,  with  some  confidence,  to  fix  the  date  of 
the  defeat  of  the  Saka  conqueror  of  Dilli  in  A.  D.  78,  which 
is  the  initial  point  of  the  Sake-era  of  Salivahana. 

Accepting  this  date  as  tolerably  well  established  for  an 
event  in  ancient  Indian  history,  the  foundation  of  Dilli  must 
he  placed  at  some  earlier  period,  and  perhaps  the  date  of  57 
E.  C.,  or  contemporary  with  Vikramaditya,  as  recorded  by 
Ferishta,  may  not  he  far  from  the  truth.  Regarding  the 
widely  spread  tradition  that  Dilli  was  deserted  for  792  years, 
from  the  conquest  of  Vikramaditya  to  the  time  of  the  first 
Tomara  Raja  Anang  Pal,  I think  that  it  may  he  fully  ex- 
plained by  supposing  that  during  that  period  Dilli  was  not  the 
residence  of  the  King.  It  is  almost  certain  that  it  was  not  the 
capital  of  the  powerful  family  of  the  Guptas,  who  most  probab- 
ly reigned  from  A.  D.  78  to  319  ; and  it  is  quite  certain  that 
it  was  not  the  capital  of  the  great  King  Harsha  Vardlihana  and 
his  immediate  predecessors,  whose  metropolis  was  Kanoj  du- 
ring the  latter  half  of  the  sixth,  and  the  first  half  of  the  seventh 
century.  That  Dilli  was  most  probably  occupied  during 
this  period,  we  may  infer  from  the  erection  of  the  Iron 
Pillar  by  Raja  DMvci,  the  date  of  which  is  assigned  to  the 
third  or  fourth  century  by  James  Prinsep.*  Mr.  Thomas 
“ considers  that  Prinsep  has  assigned  too  high  an  antiquity 
to  the  style  of  writing  employed  on  this  monument but 
on  this  point  I venture  to  differ,  as  I.  find,  after  a careful 
examination  of  the  inscription,  that  the  whole  of  the  letters 
are  the  same  as  those  of  the  records  of  the  Gupta  dynasty, 
whose  downfall  is  assigned  to  A.  D.  319  by  Abu  Rilian, 
I think  it  probable  that  Raja  Dhava  may  have  been  one  of 
the  princes  who  assisted  in  the  overthrow  of  the  once  power- 
ful Guptas,  and  I would,  therefore,  fix  on  A.  D.  319  as  an 
easily  remembered  and  useful  approximation  to  his  true 

A still  earlier  mention  of  Dilli  may  possibly  be  found  in 
Ptolemy’s  Daidala,  which  is  placed  close  to  Indabara  (perhaps 
Indrpat,)  and  midway  between  Modura  or  Mathura,  and  Batan 
Kaisara , or  Sthaneswara.  For  the  last  name  I propose  to 
read  Satanaisara  as  its  position  between  Mathura  and 

Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1S38,  p.  629. 



Zulindrine  or  the  Jalandhar  Doab  renders  it  almost  certain 
that  it  must  be  Stlmneswara  or  Thanesar.  The  close  proxi- 
mity of  Daidala  to  Indabara , joined  to  the  curious  resem- 
blance of  their  names  to  Dilli  and  Indrpat,  seems  to  me  to 
offer  very  fair  grounds  for  assuming  their  probable  identity 
with  these  two  famous  Indian  cities. 

The  ancient  city  of  Dilli  may,  with  tolerable  certainty, 
be  considered  to  have  occupied  almost  the  same  site  as  the 
fort  of  Dai  Pithora,  as  it  is  to  be  presumed  that  the  Iron 
Pillar  must  have  been  erected  in  some  conspicuous  position, 
either  within  the  old  city,  or  close  to  it.  With  the  solitary 
exception  of  the  Iron  Pillar,  I am  not  aware  that  there  are 
any  existing  remains  that  can  be  assigned  with  certainty  to 
the  old  Hindu  city  of  Dilli.  A single  pillar,  amongst  the 
many  hundreds  that  now  form  the  colonnades  of  the  Kutb 
Minar,  may  perhaps  belong  to  the  old  city,  as  it  bears  a 
figure  either  of  Buddha  the  Ascetic  seated  in  contemplation, 
or  of  one  of  the  Jain  hierarchs.  No  doubt  some,  and  per- 
haps even  many,  of  the  pillars  of  these  colonnades  may  have 
belonged  to  temples  of  the  old  Hindu  city;  but  after  a 
minute  examination  on  three  successive  days,  of  the  sculptures 
on  the  pillars,  and  of  all  the  letters  and  mason’s  marks  on 
the  pillars  and  walls,  I came  to  the  unwilling  conclusion  that 
(with  the  two  exceptions  just  noted)  there  is  nothing  now 
existing  that  is  older  than  the  tenth  or  eleventh  century. 

According  to  the  tradition  which  is  universally  accepted 
by  all  Hindus,  the  city  of  Dilli  was  re-built  by  Anang  Pal, 
the  first*  King  of  the  Tomar  dynasty.  The  manuscript  of 
Kliarg  Dai,  which  I obtained  at  Gwalior,  names  him  Bilan 
Be,  and  a second  manuscript,  received  from  Bikaner,  calls 
him  Bilan  Deo  or  Anang  Bdl ; but  Abul  Pazl,  Colonel  Tod, 
and  Syad  Ahmad  call  him  simply  Anang  Pal ; and  he  is  so 
named  in  two  inscriptions  which  are  found  on  the  Iron  Pillar. 
The  date  of  Anang  Pal,  the  founder  of  the  Tomar  dynasty, 
is  variously  given  by  the  different  authorities  ; but  even  the 
most  discrepant  of  these  dates,  when  carefully  examined, 
will  be  found  to  agree  within  a few  years  of  the  others.  The 
different  dates  given  are  as  follows  : 

1$£. — The  Gwalior  manuscript  of  Kliarg  Rai. — This  date 
has  already  been  referred  to.  Kharg  Rai  states 
that  Dilli  was  deserted  for  792  years  after 



Vikramaditya,  wlien  it  was  re-founded 
Bilan  De  Tomar.  This  gives  the  year  A.  D. 
736  as  before  noted.  Colonel  Tod  refers  to  the 
same  tradition  when  he  states  that  Delhi  lay 
waste  for  eight  centuries.*  But  I am  satisfied 
that  he  had  the  well  known  number  of  792 
recorded  in  his  notes,  for,  in  the  very  same 
page  in  which  he  makes  the  above  statement, 
he  gives  the  date  of  the  re-building  of  Dilli 
by  Anang  Pal  as  Samvat  848,  which,  by  using 
his  erroneous  difference  of  56  years,  instead  of 
57,  is  equivalent  to  A.  D.  792.  But  in  an- 
other part  of  his  work,  Colonel  Tod  states 
that  he  possessed  the  original  Hindu  manuscript 
which  Abul  Pazl  had  used,  and  that  the 
date  of  the  re-building  of  Dilli  by  Anang  Pal 
was  Samvat  829  instead  of  S.  429.  I strongly 
suspect  that  Colonel  Tod  has  made  a mistake 
in  this  last  statement,  for  I found,  on  examining 
the  bard  Muk-ji’s  manuscript,  then  in  the 
possession  of  his  sons,  that  S.  821  is  the  date 
assigned  to  the  overthrow  of  the  Tomaras,  and 
not  to  their  rise.  Prom  these  different  state- 
ments I feel  assured  that  he  must  have  found 
the  number  792  recorded  in  his  notes  without 
any  explanation,  and  that  he  erroneously 
adopted  it  as  the  date  of  the  re-founding  of 

2nd. — In  the  Ain  Akbari  of  Abul  Pazl,  the  date  of 
Anang  Pal  is  placed  in  Samvat  429,  and  the 
end  of  the  Tomar  dynasty  in  S.  848  ;f  thus 
limiting  the  rule  of  the  Tomaras  to  419  years, 
while  his  detailed  account  of  the  lengths  of 
reigns  amounts  to  437  years.  The  former 
period  has  been  adopted  by  Syad  Ahmad,  as  I 
think,  judiciously,  because  of  the  increased 
chances  of  error  in  the  detail  of  twenty  reigns. 
On  the  Iron  Pillar  this  date  is  given  as  S.  419, 
and  the  fall  of  the  dynasty  is  assigned  to  S.  648, 

# Rajasthan,  I.,  p.  87. 
t Gladwin’s  Translation,  I.,  pp.  96  and  97. 



which  is  most  probably  an  error  of  the  en- 
graver for  S.  846.  The  difference  between 
these  dates  is  427  years. 

3rd. — In  two  manuscripts  from  Kumaon  and  Garhwal, 
the  date  of  the  first  Tomara  Raja  is  given  as 
13th  Bhadon  S.  846,  which  is  equivalent  to 
A.  D.  789.*  But  as  both  of  these  manuscripts 
omit  the  first  three  names,  which  are  found  in 
all  the  other  manuscripts,  I conclude  that  the 
date  therein  given  is  that  of  the  fourth  prince 
of  the  other  lists.  Deducting,  therefore,  from 
the  above  date  the  sum  of  the  three  omitted 
reigns,  which  amount  to  58  years,  we  obtain 
A.  D.  731  as  another  period  for  the  re-building 
of  Dilli  by  Anang  Pal. 

It  will  be  observed  that  the  three  manuscripts  from 
Gwalior,  Kumaon,  and  Garhwal,  place  the  date  of  the  re- 
founding of  Dilli  in  the  eighth  century  A.  D.,  whereas  Abul 
Pazl  and  the  inscription  on  the  Iron  Pillar  refer  this  event 
to  the  fourth  century  A.  D. ; and  so  also  does  the  author  of 
the  Araish-i-Mahfil , who  gives  S.  440.  Now,  although  Abul 
Pazl  specially  notes  that  his  date  of  429  is  of  the  era  of 
Vikramaditya,  yet  he  is  most  undoubtedly  wrong,  as  I will 
now  show  from  other  statements  of  his  own.  According  to 
this  account,  the  Tomar  dynasty,  which  lasted  419  years, 
was  succeeded  by  the  Chohan  dynasty,  which  ruled  for  83 
years,  and  was  then  overcome  by  Sultan  Mudz-uddin  Same. 
The  period  of  this  event  is  stated  to  be  A.  IT.  588,  or  A.  D. 
1192.  Now,  deducting  419  + 83,  or  502  years,  from  A.  D. 
1192,  we  obtain  A.  D.  690  as  the  true  date  of  Anang  Pal 
according  to  Abul  Pazl’s  own  figures,  instead  of  S.  429 — 57, 
or  A.  D.  372,  as  stated  in  his  text.  But  as  the  rule  of  the 
Chohans  is  limited  to  41-^-  years  in  my  two  manuscripts  from. 
Kumaon  and  Garhwal,  and  to  40  years  in  my  Gwalior 
manuscript,  I think  that  the  authority  of  these  three  records 
may  be  taken  as  at  least  of  equal  weight  with  that  of  the 
Ain  Akbari.  The  true  periods  of  the  two  dynasties  will, 
therefore,  be  419  + 41  = 460  years,  which  deducted  from 
A.  D.  1191,  the  corrected  date  of  Muaz-uddin’s  conquest,  will 

* A third  MS.  from  KedarnUth  agrees  generally  with  the  two  previously  obtained 
from  Bhimtal  and  Srinagar. 


give  A.  D.  731  for  Anang  Pal’s  re-building  of  Dilli,  which 
is  within  five  years  of  the  traditional  date  of  A.  I).  736, 
already  noticed. 

The  only  explanation  which  I can  propose  of  the  great 
discrepancy  between  the  true  date  and  that  which  is  stated 
in  the  Ain  Akbari  is,  that  Abul  Pazl  simply  mistook  the  era 
in  which  he  found  the  date  recorded.  Now,  if  we  suppose 
that  the  era  of  his  dates  was  that  of  BalcibJii,  which  began 
A.  D.  319,  we  shall  have  S.  429  + 318  = 747  A.  D.  as  the 
corrected  date  for  the  re-building  of  Dilli  by  Anang  Pal 
according  to  Abul  Pazl.  But  by  using  the  date  of  S.  419, 
which  is  recorded  on  the  Iron  Pillar,  we  shall  obtain  A.  D. 
737,  which  is  within  one  year  of  the  date  already  fixed  by 
the  traditional  story  of  Dilli  having  lain  waste  for  792  years, 
and  which  agrees  also  with  the  date  derived  from  the  lengths 
of  reigns  by  working  backwards  from  A.  D.  1193,  the  period 
of  Muaz-uddin’s  conquest.  I therefore  look  upon  the  date 
of  A.  D.  736  for  the  re-building  of  Dilli  under  Anang  Pal 
as  being  established  on  grounds  that  are  more  than  usually 
firm  for  early  Indian  History.  The  famous  poet  Mir  Khusru, 
of  Delhi,  who  wrote  both  before  and  after  A.  D.  1300,  gives 
an  amusing  ancedote  of  Anang  Pal,  “a  great  Rai,  who  lived 
five  or  six  hundred  years  ago.”  “ At  the  entrance  of  his 
palace  he  had  placed  two  lions,  sculptured  in  stone.  He  fixed 
a bell  by  the  side  of  the  two  lions,  in  order  that  those  who 
sought  justice  might  strike  it,  upon  which  the  Rai  would 
order  them  to  be  summoned,  would  listen  to  their  complaints, 
and  render  justice.  One  day  a crow  came  and  sat  on  the 
bell,  and  struck  it,  when  the  Rai  asked  who  the  complainant 
was.  It  is  a fact,  not  unknown,  that  bold  crows  will  pick 
meat  from  between  the  teeth  of  lions.  As  stone  lions  cannot 
hunt  for  their  prey,  where  could  the  crow  obtain  its  usual 
sustenance  ? As  the  Rai  was  satisfied  that  the  crow  justly 
complained  of  hunger,  having  come  to  sit  by  his  stone  lions, 
he  gave  orders  that  some  goats  and  sheep  should  be  killed, 
on  which  the  crow  might  feed  himself  for  some  days.”* 

* Sir  H.  M.  Elliot’s  Muhammadan  Historians  of  India,  edited  by  Dowson,  III.,  565. 
From  this  story  we  learn  that  so  early  as  A D.  1300  Auang  Pal  was  believed  to  have  reigned 
in  Delhi  between  700  and  800  A.  D.,  which  agrees  exactly  with  the  statements  of  the 



Accepting  tliis  date  of  A.  D.  736,  we  have  to  account 
for  the  period  of  792  years  during  which  Dilli  is  said  to  have 
lain  waste,  when  it  is  almost  certain  that,  the  city  must  have 
been  occupied  at  the  time  when  Raja  Dhdvci  erected  the  Iron 
Pillar.  Perhaps  the  simplest  explanation  is  that  which  I 
have  already  given,  viz.,  that  during  this  period  Dilli  was 
not  the  metropolis  of  the  Kings  of  Upper  India.  The  silence 
of  the  Chinese  pilgrims  Ea  Ilian  and  Hwen  Thsang  regarding 
Dilli  may,  perhaps,  he  considered  as  a strong  proof  of  the  small- 
ness of  the  city  from  A.  D.  400  to  640.  Ea  Hian,  however, 
does  not  mention  any  place  between  Taxila  and  Mathura, 
and  Hwen  Thsang  could  only  have  passed  through  Dilli  once, 
viz.,  when  he  returned  from  Mathura  to  Thanesar.  It  is 
even  possible  that  he  may  have  travelled  by  Mirat,  which 
then  possessed  one  of  Asoka’s  Pillars,  for,  if  Dilli  was  not 
a famous  place  amongst  the  Buddhists,  as  I believe  it  was 
not,  it  is  improbable  that  he  would  have  visited  it. 

Dilli  must,  however,  have  been  the  Capital  of  Anang 
Pal,  and  most  probably  also  of  several  of  his  successors ; but 
I have  a strong  suspicion  that  the  later  Rajas  of  the  Tomar 
dynasty  resided  at  Kanoj.  M.  Reinaud  remarks  that  Otbi, 
the  historian  of  Mahmud,  makes  no  mention  of  the  city  of 
Dilli,  and  that  only  a single  allusion  to  it  is  made  by  Abu 
Rilian  in  his  Kanun-al-masudi.  It  is,  indeed,  a fact  worthy 
of  special  notice  that  Dilli  is  not  once  mentioned  in  Abu 
Rihan’s  geographical  chapter,  which  gives  the  routes  between 
all  the  principal  places  in  Northern  India.  He  notices 
Thanesai:,  and  Mathura,  and  Kanoj,  but  Dilli  is  never  men- 
tioned, an  omission  which  could  hardly  have  happened  had 
Dilli  been  the  capital  of  the  famous  Tomar  Rajas  at  that 
time.  I conclude,  therefore,  that  Dilli  was  not  their  resi- 
dence in  the  beginning  of  the  eleventh  century,  and  I think 
that  I can  show  with  much  probability  that  Kanoj  was  the 
metropolis  of  the  Tomar  Rajas  for  several  generations  prior 
to  the  invasion  of  Mahmud  of  Ghazni. 

In  A.  H.  303,  or  A.  D.  915,  India  was  visited  by  the 
well  known  Geographer  Masudi,  who  records  that  “ the  King 
of  Kanoj,  who  is  one  of  the  Kings  of  es-Sind,  is  Budah  ; this 
is  a title  general  to  all  Kings  of  el- Kanoj.”*  The  name 

* Sir  H.  M.  Elliot— Historians  of  India,  I.,  57. 


1 1G 


which  in  tlie  above  extract  is  read  as  Budah  by  Sir  Henry 
Elliot  is  said  by  Gildemeister,*  to  be  written  Bovarah  in  the 
original,  for  which  he  proposes  to  read  Boravah,  for  the  well 
known  Baurciva.  Erom  the  King  of  Oudh’s  Dictionary  two 
different  spellings  are  quoted,  as  Bordn,  and  For an ; while 
in  Eerishta  the  name  is  either  Korrah,  as  written  by  Dow, 
or  Kuwar,  as  written  by  Briggs.  In  Abulfeda  the  name  is 
Nodah.  Now,  as  the  name,  of  which  so  many  readings  have 
just  been  given,  was  that  of  the  King’s  family  or  tribe,  I 
believe  that  we  may  almost  certainly  adopt  Tovarah 
as  the  true  reading  according  to  one  spelling,  and  Torali, 
according  to  the  other.  In  the  Sanskrit  inscriptions  of  the 
GAvalior  dynasty  of  this  name,  the  word  is  invariably  spelt 
Tomara.  Kharg  Eai  writes  Todr,  which  is  much  the  same 
as  Colonel  Tod’s  Tudr , and  the  Tuvdr,  of  the  Kumaon  and 
Garhwal  manuscripts.  Lastly,  in  Gladwin’s  Ain  Akbari 
I find  Tenore  and  Toonoor,  for  which  I presume  that  the 
original  has  simply,  Tunwar.  Erom  a comparison  of  all 
these  various  readings,  I conclude  that  the  family  name  of  the 
Eaja  of  Kanoj  in  A.  D.  915,  when  Masudi  visited  India, 
and  again  in  A.  D.  1017  and  1021,  when  Mahmud  of 
Ghazni  invaded  India,  was  in  all  probability  Tovar  or  Tomar. 
In  favour  of  this  conclusion  there  is  the  further  testimony 
of  Masudi  that  in  A.  D.  915  the  four  great  Kings  of  India 
known  to  the  Musalmans  were,  1st,  the  Balhard,  who  lived 
in  Mtinlur ; 2nd,  the  King  of  Kanoj ; 3rd,  the  King  of 
Kashmir ; and  4th,  the  King  of  Sind.  As  no  King  of  Dilli 
is  mentioned,  it  seems  not  unreasonable  to  infer  that  at  that 
time,  in  A.  D.  915,  the  poAverful  Tomars  most  probably  held 
their  Court  at  Kanoj. 

If  I am  correct  in  the  above  identification,  then  the 
name  of  the  King  at  the  time  of  Mahmud’s  invasion  should 
correspond  with  that  of  the  Tomar  Eaja,  who,  according  to 
the  genealogical  lists,  was  reigning  at  that  particular  period. 
According  to  Othi\  the  name  of  this  Eaja  of  Kanoj 
was  Baj  Pal,  or  Rdjaipal,  which  I take  to  be  equivalent 
to  Eaja  Jaypdl.  Now  the  14th  prince  in  Abul  Eazl’s  list! 

# Scriptorum  Arab  de  rebus  Indicis,  p.  ICO. 
f Remaud  Fragments,  Arabes,  p.  2G3. 

J Ain  Akbari,  II — 94. 



is  Jaypal,  whose  death,  according  to  the  lengths  of  reigns 
given  in  the  Ain  Akbari,  occurred  287  years  and  6 months 
after  the  re-building  of  Dilli  by  Anang  Pal.  Adding  this 
number  to  A.  D.  736J,  we  obtain  the  year  1023f  as  that 
of  the  death  of  Jaypal.  By  comparing  the  lists  of  Abul 
Eazl  and  Syad  Ahmad  with  those  of  my  Gwalior,  Kumaon, 
and  Garhwal  manuscripts,  and  taking  the  lengths  of  reigns 
according  to  the  majority  of  these  five  authorities,  the  period 
elapsed  from  the  accession  of  Anang  Pal  to  the  death  of 
Jaypal,  amounts  to  285  years  and  6 months.  Adding  this 
number  to  A.  X).  736J,  we  get  1021f  as  the  date  of  Jaypal’s 
death,  which  is,  I believe,  within  a few  months  of  the  true 
date.  According  to  Perislita,*  Mahmud  first  heard  of  the 
alliance  of  the  Hindu  princes  against  his  tributary  the  King 
of  Kanoj,  some  time  in  the  Hijra  year  412,  which  began  on 
17th  April  1021.  As  several  other  events  are  previously 
recorded,  and  as  Mahmud  is  said  to  have  marched  to  his  aid 
at  once,  I conclude  that  he  may  have  left  Ghazni  about 
October  1021,  and  as  Kanoj  is  three  months’  march  distant 
from  Ghazni, f he  must  have  reached  that  city  in  January 
1022.  On  his  arrival,  Mahmud  found  that  the  King  of  Kanoj 
had  already  been  attacked  and  killed.  The  death  of  Jaypal 
must,  therefore,  have  occurred  about  December  1021,  which 
agrees  almost  exactly  with  the  date  of  his  death,  which  I have 
already  deduced  from  the  genealogical  lists.  Precisely  the 
same  date  also  is  obtained  by  working  backwards  by  lengths 
of  reigns  from  the  date  of  Muazuddin’s  conquest  of  Dilli  in 
A.  D.  1191. 

Since  this  account  was  written,  the  2nd  volume  of  Pro- 
fessor Dowson’s  edition  of  Sir  H.  M.  Elliot’s  Muhammadan 
Historians  of  India  has  appeared,  which  contains t a transla- 
tion of  the  Mirat-i-Asrdr , being  a fabulous  relation  of  the 
acts  of  Salar  Sahu  and  his  son  Salar  Masaud.  The  latter  is 
said  to  have  captured  Delhi,  and  to  have  killed  the  King 
named  Mahipal.  But  as  Masaud  was  born  in  A.  D.  1014, 
and  was  18  years  of  age  when  he  reached  Oudh,  after  passing 
Delhi  and  Kanoj,  the  capture  of  Delhi  cannot  have  taken 
place  earlier  than  A.  D.  1030,  when  he  was  17  years  of  age. 

* Briggs,  I — 63. 

+ Briggs’s  Ferislita,  I — 57. 
i Appendix,  pp.  515 — 549. 



But  as  the  King  of  Kanoj  is  called  Jaypal,  whom  we  know 
to  have  been  killed  in  A.  3).  1021,  I have  no  faith  in  the 
truth  of  the  narrative,  which  was  compiled  by  a credulous 
author  in  the  reign  of  Jahangir.  There  are  two  Mahipals  in 
the  lists,  one  of  whom  formed  the  lake  and  gave  his  name  to 
the  village  of  Mahipalpur,  but  neither  of  their  dates 
fits  with  that  of  Salar  Masaud.  The  silence  of  the  contem- 
porary historian  Otbi  regarding  Delhi,  and  its  immunity  from 
attack  during  the  long  reign  of  Mahmud,  when  the  neigh- 
bouring cities  of  Thanesar,  Mirat,  Mathura,  and  Kanoj,  were 
all  captured,  seem  to  me  quite  incredible  on  any  other  suppo- 
sition than  that  which  I have  endeavoured  to  prove,  namely, 
that  Delhi  was  then  a comparatively  unimportant  town, 
without  any  means  of  defence,  as  Lalkot  had  not  then  been 
built,  and  without  the  wealth  of  a capital,  to  attract  the 
cupidity  of  an  invader.  The  occurrence  of  the  two  names  of 
Jaypal  and  Kuwar  Pal  in  the  list  of  Tomar  Princes  of  Delhi 
at  the  very  time  that  the  same  names  are  given  by  the  Muham- 
madan historians  as  those  of  two  Kings  of  Kanoj,  seems  to  me 
to  admit  of  only  one  explanation — that  they  were  identical. 

The  following  lists  of  the  Tomar  dynasty  of  Dilli  contain 
all  the  information  which,  up  to  this  time,  I have  been  able 
to  collect.  The  list  of  Abul  Pazl  is  given  in  the  Ain  Akbari ; 
and  Syad  Ahmad’s  list  is  printed  in  his  Asar-us-Sunnddid. 
The  Bikaner  manuscript,  which  I obtained  in  1846,  agrees 
exactly  in  the  order  of  the  names,  and  very  closely  also  in  the 
spelling  of  them,  with  those  of  the  printed  lists  just  noticed ; 
but  it  unfortunately  wants  the  lengths  of  reigns.  The 
Gwalior  manuscript,  which  I procured  in  1849,  agrees  very 
closely  with  the  others  as  to  the  lengths  of  reigns,  but  it 
differs  slightly  in  the  order  of  the  names.  As  this  list  is 
appended  to  Kharg  Kai’s  History  of  Gwalior,  which  was 
composed  in  the  reign  of  Shahjahan,  it  is  valuable  as  an  inde- 
pendent authority.  The  Kumaon  and  Garliwal  manuscripts, 
which  were  obtained  in  1859  and  1862,  respectively,  are 
imperfect  in  the  same  places,  which  shows  that  they  must 
have  been  derived  from  a common  source.*  They  are  valu- 
able, however,  for  their  agreement  in  omitting  the  last  king 
of  the  other  lists,  named  Prithvi  Rai  or  Prithivi  Pdla  who 

# A third  MS. , since  obtained  from  Kedarnath,  agrees  very  closely  with  these  MSS.  from 
Bhim  Tal  and  Srinagar.  A list  published  by  Mangal  Sen,  in  his  History  of  Bulandshahr, 
agrees  with  that  of  Syad  Ahmad,  except  in  Xo.  8,  which  he  gives  as  Bhim  Raj. 



would  appear  to  be  the  same  as  the  Chohan  Prithivi  Raja, 
commonly  called  Rai  Pithora.  In  proof  of  this,  I may  adduce 
the  fact  that  the  promised  number  of  nineteen  Tamara  Rajas 
is  complete  without  this  name. 


Abul  Fazl,  Syad  Ahmad, 
Bikaner  MS. 

Gwalior  MSS. 

Kumaon,  Garhwal 

Y.  M.  D. 


A.  D. 


Ananga  Pala  . . 

Bilan  De 



0 0 





Vasu  Deva 




1 18 









3 28 





Prithivi  Malla* 




6 19 





Jaya  Deva 

Saha  Deva 

Jadu  P. 


7 28 





Nira,  or  Hira  P. 


Nai  P. 


4 9 





Udiraj,  or  Adereh 

Nara  P. 

Jaya  Deva  P 


7 11 





Vijaya,  or  Vacha 


Chamra  P 


2 13 





Biksha,  or  Anek 

Vacha  Raja 

Bibasa  P. 


3 16 





Riksha  P. 

Vira  P. 

Sukla  P. 


6 5 





Sukh,  or  Nek  P. 


Teja  P. 


4 4 






Tillan  De 



3 15 





Sallakshana  P. . . 




10  10 





Jaya  P. 

Osa  P. 

Jaik  P. 


4 3 





Kunwar  P. 

Kumara  P. 



9 IS 





Ananga,  or  Anek 

Ananga  P. 

Anek  P. 


6 IS 





Vijaya  Sab,  or  Pal 

Teja  P. 



1 6 





Mabatsal,  Mahi  P. 

Mahi  P. 

Jyiln  P. 


2 23 





Akr  Pal,  Akhsal 

Mukund  P. 

Ane  P. 


2 15 





Capture  of 






Prithivi  Raja  . . 

Prithivi  P. 



2 16 

* Or  Pala. 

In  the  above  list  I have  adopted  as  a starting  point  the 
exact  amount  of  792  years  complete  from  the  time  of  Yikra- 
maditya;  or  792  — 56§  = 735 J years  complete,  or  April  A.  I). 
73G.  But  it  is  obvious  that  the  period  elapsed  is  more  likely 
to  have  been  792  years  and  some  months  over  than  the  exact 
number  of  792  years.  Por  instance,  792J  years  would  place 
the  death  of  Jaya  Pala  in  A.  D.  1021-11-29,  that  is,  on  the 
29th  December  A.  D.  1021;  but  as  the  exact  date  of  this 
event  is  not  recorded  by  the  Muhammadan  Historians,  I have 



thought  it  best  to  adhere  to  the  date  obtained  from  the  com- 
plete period  of  792  years. 

I urill  now  consider  the  claim  which  I have  put  forward 
on  the  part  of  the  Tomara  dynasty  as  Eajas  of  Kanoj.  We 
know  that,  after  the  conquest  of  Kanoj  by  Mahmud  early 
in  A.  D.  1022,  the  reigning  family  changed  its  residence  to 
Bari,  which  was  three  days’  journey  distant,  on  the  east  side 
of  the  Ganges.  Mirkhond  states  that  it  was  situated  at  the 
confluence  of  three  rivers,  namely,  the  Saro,  the  Kubin,  and 
the  Rahab .*  According  to  Itashiduddin,  the  three  rivers  are 
the  Rahet,  the  Gomati,  and  the  Sarju. f The  second  of  these 
rivers  is  undoubtedly  the  Gumti,  which  in  Sanskrit  is  the 
Gomati.  The  first  is  either  the  Behta,  or  else  the  Rahria, 
which  joins  the  Behta,  and  the  third  is  the  Sarain,  a good 
sized  stream  which  passes  by  Sitapur.  Both  the  Behta  and 
Sarain  join  the  Gumti  near  Bari,  which  still  exists  as  a good 
sized  village.  As  Abu  Bihan,  who  records  this  change  of 
capital,  was  actually  resident  in  India  at  the  time  when  it 
took  place,  and  as  his  work  was  written  in  A.  D.  1031,  we 
have  the  most  complete  authentication  of  Mirkhond’s  date  of 
this  event.  I presume  that  the  change  was  made  on  account 
of  the  exposed  situation  of  Kanoj,  which  had  so  lately  been 
twice  captured,  first,  in  A.  D.  1017  by  Mahmud,  and  again  in 
A.  I).  1021  by  the  Baja  of  Kalanjar  and  his  allies.  I con- 
clude, therefore,  K unicar  Fdl,  or  Kumara  Fal,  who  was  the 
successor  of  Jaypal,  reigned  at  Bari  from  A.  D.  1021 
to  1051. 

About  this  very  time  also,  as  we  learn  from  several 
inscriptions,  the  kingdom  of  Kanoj  was  conquered  by 
Chandra  I) era,  the  founder  of  the  Rahtor  dynasty  of  Kanoj . 
We  possess  no  inscriptions  of  Chandra  Deva  himself;  but 
there  is  one  of  his  son,  Madana  Pala,  which  is  dated  in 
S.  1154  or  A.  D.  1097;  and  two  of  his  grandson,  Govinda 
Chandra,  dated  in  S.  1177  and  S.  1219  or  A.  D.  1120  and 
1162.  We  know  also  from  other  inscriptions  that  Govinda’s 
grandson  ascended  the  throne  between  A.  D.  1172  and  1177, 
or  say  in  A.  D.  1175.  With  these  dates  before  us,  we  may 
safely  fix  Govinda’s  accession  in  A.  I).  1110  or  1115,  and 

# Reinaud,  “ Fragments  Arabes,’’  &c.,— See  pp.  99 — 100,  note. 
+ Sir  H.  M.  Elliot's  Muhammadan  Historians  of  India,  p.  32. 



tliat  of  liis  grandfather,  Chandra  Deva,  the  founder  of  the 
dynasty,  in  A.  D.  1050.  Now  this  is  the  very  date,  as  we 
learn  from  other  sources,  at  which  Anang  Pal  II.,  the 
successor  of  Kumara  Pala,  established  himself  at  Dilli,  and 
built  the  fort  of  Ldlhot.  On  the  iron  pillar  there  is  a short 
inscription  in  three  lines,  which  appears  to  be  a contemporary 
record  of  Anang  Pal  himself,  as  the  characters  are  similar  to 
those  of  the  mason’s  marks  on  the  pillars  of  the  colonnade 
of  the  Great  Mosque,  but  are  quite  different  from  those  of 
the  two  modern  Nagari  inscriptions,  which  are  close  beside 
it.  The  following  are  the  words  of  this  short  record : 
“ Samvat  Dihali  1109  Ang  Pal  balii ,”  which  may  be  trans- 
lated thus — “ In  Samvat  1109,  or  A.  I).  1052,  Ang  (or 
Anang ) Pal  peopled  Dilli.”  This  statement  is  borne  out 
by  the  testimony  of  the  Kumaon  and  Garhwal  manuscripts, 
in  which,  opposite  the  name  of  Anek  Pal,  I find  recorded 
that  in  Samvat  1117,  or  A.  D.  1060,  on  the  10th  of  Mdrga- 
siras  Sudi  “ he  built  the  Port  of  Dilli  and  called  it  “ Ldlhot” 
{Dilli  Tea  hot  hardy  a > Ldlhot  hahaya”).  This  name  was  still 
in  use  during  the  reign  of  the  first  Musalman  King,  Kut- 
buddin  Aibeg,  as  I find  in  the  manuscripts  of  Muh-ji , the 
bard  of  the  Khichi  Chohans,  that  Kutbuddin,  soon  after  his 
accession,  issued  seven  orders  to  the  Hindu  Chiefs,  of  which 
the  fifth  is  “ Ldlhot  tai  nagdro  bdjto  a”  or  “kettle-drums 
are  not  to  be  beaten  in  Lalkot.”  This  is  a rule  which  is  still 
observed,  as  none  but  the  royal  drums  are  beaten  where  the 
sovereign  is  present.  Kutbuddin  must,  therefore,  have  taken 
up  his  residence  in  Lalkot,  or  the  fortified  city  of  Anang 
Pal.*  . 

Now  this  date,  recorded  on  the  Iron  Pillar,  agrees  so 
exactly  with  the  period  of  the  Rahtor  conquest  of  Kanoj, 
that  I think  we  may  infer,  with  considerable  probability, 
that  the  re-building  of  Dilli  by  Anang  Pal  was  owing  to  the 
loss  of  the  territory  of  Kanoj  along  with  its  new  Capital  of 
Bari  in  Oudh.f  The  accession  of  Anang  Pal  II.,  according 

* This  is  confirmed  by  the  Muhammadan  Historians,  who  state  that  the  first  two  Kings, 
Kutb-ud-din  Aibeg  and  Shamsuddin  Altamsh  resided  in  the  Fort  of  Rai  Pithora.  See  Ain 
Akbari  by  Gladwin,  II.,  p.  86. 

+ The  loss  of  power  by  the  Tomar  Princes  of  Delhi  at  this  very  time  would  seem  to 
be  confirmed  by  the  asserted  supremacy  of  Chandra  Deva,  the  Rathor  Raja  of  Kanoj,  who 
is  called  the  “protector  of  the  sacred  places  at  Kasi,  Kusika,  Xorthem  Kosala,  and  Indras- 
thdua,”  of  winch  the  last  is  only  another  name  for  Indraprastha,  or  Delhi. — See  Dr.  Hall’s 
translation  of  Madana  Pala’s  inscription  in  the  Bengal  Asiatic  Societv’s  Journal,  1858, 
p.  224. 



to  the  genealogical  lists,  took  place  in  A.  D.  1051,  and  in 
1052  we  find  a record  of  him  on  the  Iron  Pillar  at  Dilli. 
If,  then,  we  suppose  that  he  commenced  re-building  at  once, 
there  is  every  probability  in  favour  of  the  accuracy  of  the 
statement  that  he  finished  the  Lalkot,  or  “ Red  Port,”  of 
Dilli  in  A.  D.  1060.  If  the  site  of  the  Red  Port  may  he 
fixed  by  the  position  of  the  An  an  g Tdl,  as  well  as  by  that 
of  the  Iron  Pillar  which  records  the  work,  then  the  grand 
old  fort  which  now  surrounds  the  Kutb  Minar  is  in  all  pro- 
bability the  very  Lalkot  that  was  built  by  Anang  Pal.  But 
there  are  also  three  other  points  in  favour  of  this  identifi- 
cation, viz.,  1st,  that  all  the  27  temples  destroyed  by  the 
Musalmans  would  appear  to  have  stood  inside  the  walls  of 
Lalkot ; 2nd,  that  one  of  these  27  temples  was  almost  cer- 
tainly built  in  the  reign  of  Anang  Pal ; and  3rd,  that  the 
Port  of  Rai  Pithora  is  only  an  extension  of  the  older  fort, 
which  now  surrounds  the  Kutb  Minar.  Por  these  rea- 
sons I believe  that  this  massive  old  fort,  which  is  still  in 
very  good  order  in  many  places,  is  the  identical  Lalkot  of 
Anang  PM.  The  circuit  of  its  walls,  according  to  my  sur- 
vey, is  2J  miles. 

To  this  Anang  Pal  I attribute  the  construction  of  a very 
deep  tank  situated  one-quarter  of  a mile  to  the  north-west 
of  the  Kutb  Minar,  and  which  is  still  called  Anang  Tal.  This 
tank  is  169  feet  long  from  north  to  south,  and  152  feet  broad 
from  east  to  west,  with  a depth  of  40  feet.  It  is  now  quite 
dry,  but  Syad  Ahmad  quotes  a statement  that,  in  the  time  of 
Sultan  Ala-uddin  Kliilji  (A.  D.  1296 — 1316),  the  water  used 
for  the  mortar  of  the  great  unfinished  Minar  was  brought 
from  this  tank.  I refer  also  to  this  Anang  Pal  the  founding 
of  a village  in  the  Balamgarh  District,  which  is  still  called 
Anekpur.  According  to  Syad  Ahmad,  the  popular  date  of 
this  work  is  S.  733,  or  A.  D.  676 ; and  he  attributes  it  to 
Anang  Pal  1st,  the  founder  of  the  dynasty.  But  I think  it 
more  probable  that  the  date  refers  to  the  Balabhi  era  of 
A.  D.  319,  which  will  place  the  building  of  the  village  in 
733  + 318  = A.  D.  1051,  in  which  year  Anang  Pal  2nd,  the 
true  founder  of  Dilli,  succeeded  to  the  throne.  Another 
work  of  the  same  time  is  the  Suraj  Kund,  a fine  deep  tank 
near  Anekpur,  the  building  of  which  is  attributed  to  Suraj 
Pal,  one  of  Anang  Pal’s  sons,  in  S.  743,  which,  referred  to 
the  Balabhi  era,  is  eqivalcnt  to  A.  D.  1061,  a date  which 






Anastafcised  at  the  Surveyor  General's  035 ee,  Calcutta. 


* Plate . IXZXEL 



corresponds  most  exactly  with  those  which  we  have  already 

To  Anam?  Pal  I attribute  also  the  erection  of  at  least 
one  of  the  27  temples  which  once  stood  around  the  Iron 
Pillar.  Many  of  the  pillars  and  beams  of  this  temple  have 
been  made  use  of  by  the  Musulmans  in  the  construction  of 
the  south-east  corner  of  the  colonnade  of  the  Great  Mosque. 
Most  of  them  are  inscribed  with  mason’s  marks,  as  will  he 
noticed  at  length  when  I come  to  speak  of  the  ruins  in  de- 
tail; and  one  of  them  hears  the  date  of  1124,  which,  re- 
ferred to  the  era  of  Vikramaditya,  is  equivalent  to  A.  D. 
10G7,  in  the  very  middle  of  the  reign  of  Anang  Pal  II. 

According  to  tho  traditions  of  the  people,  which  I 
managed  to  pick  up,  the  following  were  some  of  the  numer- 
ous sons  of  Anang  Pal : 

1st. — Tej  Pal,  or  Tejran,  who  founded  Tejora,  be- 
tween Gurgaon  and  Alwar.  In  the  Bikaner 
MS.  this  prince  is  called  Vijaya  Sal,  or  Pal. 

2nd. — Indrci  Paj,  who  founded  IndragarJi. 

3rd. — Pang  Paj,  who  founded  two  places  named 
TardgarJi,  of  which  one  is  said  to  he  near 

4 th. — Achal  Paj,  who  founded  Acheva,  or  Acltner, 
between  Bharatpur  and  Agra. 

5 th. — Draupada,  who  is  said  to  have  lived  at  Asi,  or 

Gill. — Sisu  Pal,  who  founded  Sirs  a and  Sisival,  said 
to  be  same  as  Sir  si  Patan. 

If  these  traditions  are  of  any  value,  they  will  enable 
us  to  judge  of  the  extent  of  Anang  Pal’s  dominions  by  the 
names  of  the  places  which  were  founded  or  held  by  his  sons. 
According  to  this  test  his  dominions  extended  from  Hansi 
on  the  north  to  Agra  on  the  south,  and  on  the  western  side 
they  reached  nearly  as  far  as  Alwar  and  Ajmer.  To  the 
eastward  they  were  most  probably  hounded  by  the  Ganges, 
beyond  which  the  whole  country  was  then  held  by  the 
Xatehria  Bajputs.  I see  nothing  improbable  in  these  tradi- 
tions of  the  Tomar  possessions,  and  I am,  therefore,  willing 
to  accept  them  as  valuable  additions  to  our  present  scanty 
knowledge  of  Hindu  history. 




There  are  traditions  of  a similar  kind  regarding  the  sons 
of  another  Tomar  Eaja,  called  Kama  Pal : hut  his  name  is 
not  to  he  found  in  any  of  the  lists.  As,  however,  one  of  his 
sons  was  called  Bach  Deo , a name  which  is  given  in  three  of 
the  lists  as  Vacha  Baja,  in  a fourth  list  as  Vijaya  Baja,  and 
in  two  others  as  Bibasa  Pula,  I think  that  we  have  some 
grounds  for  identifying  Kama  Pal  with  the  father  of  Vacha 
Deva  of  the  lists,  more  especially  as  the  lists  differ  so  much 
amongst  themselves  regarding  the  name  of  the  father  who  is 
called  both  Nar  Pal  and  Har  Pal,  cither  of  which  may  he  de- 
rived from  Kara.  He  is  variously  called  Aclereh,  JJdi-Bay, 
Indrajit,  and  Chamra  Pal,  of  which  the  first  three  names  are 
evidently  only  various  readings  of  one  original  name.  The 
sons  of  Kama  Pal,  according  to  the  popular  tradition,  were 
the  following  : 

1st. — Bach  Deo,  who  founded  Baghor,  near  Karnol, 
and  Bacliera  or  Baghera  near  Tboda  Ajmer. 

2 ml. — Nag  Deo,  who  founded  Ndgor  and  Ncigda  near 

3rd. — Kristin  Bay,  who  founded  Kishengarh,  10  miles 
to  north  north-east  of  Alwar,  and  Khds  Ganj 
between  Soron  and  Etah. 

4 th. — Nihdl  Bay,  who  founded  Ndrdyanpar,  10  miles 
to  west  of  Alwar. 

5 th. — Somasi,  who  founded  Ajabgarh,  between  Alwar 
and  Jaypur. 

G Ih. — liar  Pdl,  who  founded  Harsora,  1G  miles  to 
north  north-west  of  Alwar,  and  Harsoli , 23 
miles  to  north  of  Alwar. 

To  this  list  I may  add  Bahddurgarh,  7 miles  to  north- 
east of  Alwar,  which  is  said  to  have  been  founded  by  Kama 
Pdl  himself. 

The  only  other  work  of  the  Tomaras  which  has  come  to 
my  knowledge  is  the  village  of  Mahipdlpur , situated  two  miles 
to  the  east  north-east  of  the  Kuth  Minar,  with  its  great  em- 
banked lake,  three-quarters  of  a mile  long  and  one-quarter 
broad.  Mahi  Pal,  the  grand-father  of  Jay  Pal;  is  the  12th 



in  tlie  list,  and  reigned  from  A.  D.  961  to  979.*  The  em- 
bankment was  the  work  of  Piruz  Tughlak.f  A second  Mahi 
Pal  reigned  from  A.  D.  1105  to  1130. 

If  these  traditions  are  true,  the  dominion  of  the  Tomaras 
must  at  one  time  have  extended  to  the  westward  as  far  as 
Sirsa  and  Nagor.  To  the  south-west  there  is  the  district  of 
Todrvati,  or  Tomarcivati,  between  Alwar  and  Shekliavati ; 
and  to  the  south-east  there  is  the  district  of  Todrghdr,  or 
Tomarghdr,  between  Dholpur  and  Gwalior,  both  of  which 
still  preserve  the  name  of  this  once  powerful  clan.  The 
Tomara  dynasty  of  Gwalior,  which  held  that  strong  fort  for 
nearly  a century  and  a half,  traced  its  descent  from  Anang 
Pal  of  Dilli,  and  the  present  Chief  of  Toarvati,  as  well  as  the 
Tomar  Zemindars  of  Toarghar,  still  proudly  lay  claim  to  the 
same  origin. 

Anang  Pal  II.  was  succeeded  by  three  other  Pajas 
of  the  Tomar  family,  of  whom  the  last  was  a prince  of 
the  same  name,  Anang  Pal  III.  During  the  reign  of  this 
last  King,  Dilli  was  captured  by  the  Chohans  under  Visala 
Deva,  hut  the  date  of  this  event  has  not  yet  been  satis- 
factorily ascertained.  According  to  Abul  Pazl  it  occurred 
in  S.  818,  which,  referred  to  the  Balabhi  era,  gives  A.  D. 
1166 ; hut  as  the  date  of  Visala' s inscription  on  Piruz 
Shah’s  Pillar  is  S.  1220  of  Vikrama,  or  A.  D.  1163,  it  is  cer- 
tain that  the  capture  of  Dilli  must  have  preceded  the  con- 
queror’s advance  to  the  foot  of  the  hills  near  Khizrabad, 
where  this  pillar  was  then  standing.  This  position  at  the 
foot  of  the  Himalaya  Mountains  is  specially  referred  to  in 
the  record  where  Visala  speaks  of  having  made  tributary  all 
the  regions  between  Himavat  and  Vindhya.i  Muk-ji,  the 
bard  of  the  Khichi  Chohans,  gives  the  date  as  S.  821,  which, 
compared  with  Abul  Pazl’s  date,  is  probably  too  early.  The 
author  of  the  Araisli-i-mahfil  says  that  it  was  rather  more 
than  1200  Samvat , that  is,  somewhat  later  than  A.  D.  1143. 

* Tlie  Hindu  pillars  of  white  marble  and  red  sandstone  which  are  found  in  the  gateway 
and  colonnade  of  Sultan  Ghari’s  tomb,  were  most  probably  the  spoils  of  a temple  to 
Siva,  built  by  Mahi  Pal  on  the  bank  of  the  Mahipalpur  Lake,  which  is  only  half  a mile  dis- 
tant from  the  tomb.  I found  a marble  argha,  or  yoni  receptacle  of  the  lingam  of  Mahadeva 
in  the  pavement  of  the  colonnade  of  the  tomb  between  two  marble  pillars, 
f Journal  of  Archaeological  Society  of  Delhi ; September  1S50,  p.  32. 

3:  The  actual  “ Capture  of  Delhi”  by  the  Chohans  is  mentioned  in  Tod’s  Bijoli  in- 
scription dated  in  S.  1226,  or  A.  D.  1169, — “Rajasthan,”  II.,  p.  743.  It  must,  therefore, 
have  occurred  some  time  earlier. 



The  Kumaon  and  Garhwal  manuscripts  place  it  in  S.  1191, 
or  A.  D.  1134  ; but  as  they  also  place  the  final  conquest  of 
the  Muhammadans  in  S.  1231,  or  A.  D.  1174,  or  just  17 
years  too  early,  it  seems  probable  that  the  capture  of  Dilli 
by  the  Chohans  may  also  be  ante-dated  by  about  the  same 
number  of  years.  Admitting  this  view  as  probably  correct, 
the  capture  of  Dilli  by  the  Chohans  will  be  referred  to 
A.  D.  1151.  Lastly,  by  the  list  which  I have  already  given 
of  the  Tomar  dynasty,  the  close  of  Anang  Pal’s  reign  is 
placed  in  the  latter  half  of  A.  D.  1151,  or  early  in  1152,  by 
accepting  the  longer  reign  of  21  years  9 months  and  16 
days,  which  is  found  in  the  Gwalior  manuscript.* 

By  a comparison  of  all  these  dates  with  the  period 
assigned  to  the  Cliohan  dynasty,  it  seems  most  probable  that 
the  true  date  of  the  capture  of  Dilli  by  the  Chohans  must 
have  been  about  A.  D.  1151.  The  period  assigned  to  the 
Chohans  varies  from  40^  years  to  41^.  By  deducting  the 
former  number  from  A.  I).  1191,  the  date  of  Muazuddin 
Sam’s  conquest,  we  obtain  A.  D.  1154  as  the  probable  period 
of  the  capture  of  Dilli  by  Yisala  Deva,  when,  according  to 
the  Kumaon  and  Garhwal  manuscripts,  Cliuwdn  takht  baitha , 
Dilli  Raj  kiya , — “ the  Cliohan  sat  on  the  throne  and  estab- 
lished his  kingdom  in  Dilli.”  But  although  Yisala  thus 
became  the  actual  lord  of  Dilli,  it  is  almost  certain  that 
Anang  Pal  was  left  in  possession  of  his  ancient  kingdom  as 
a tributary  of  the  Cliohan,  while  Someswara,  the  son  of 
Yisala,  received  Anang  Pal’s  daughter  in  marriage.  The 
issue  of  this  union,  the  famous  Prithvi  Raj,  or  Rai  Rithorci, 
became  the  adopted  son  of  the  Tomar  King,  and  was  for- 
mally acknowledged  as  heir  to  the  throne  of  Dilli.  Accord- 
ing to  the  Prithvi-Rai-  Charitra,  this  adoption  took  place  in 
A.  D.  1169,  at  which  date  Prithvi  Raj  must  have  been  about 
16  years  of  age.f  Now,  as  the  bard  Chand  records  that  the 
adoption  took  place  during  the  life-time  of  Anang  Pal,  this 
last  of  the  Tomar  Kings  was  still  reigning  in  A.  D.  1169. 
TYe  may,  therefore,  safely  fix  the  close  of  his  reign,  and  of 
the  Tomar  dynasty,  to  the  close  of  the  same  year,  or  the 

* This  leaves  40  years  for  the  reign  of  the  Cholian  dynasty  in  Delhi,  wliich  agrees  with 
the  period  assigned  to  this  race  in  the  details  of  the  Gwalior,  Kumaon,  and  Garhwal  MSS. 

t See  Wilford  in  Asiatic  Researches,  IX.,  p.  171,  quoting  the  Prithvi- Rai-Charitra, 
says  1170  ; but  as  Wilford  used  tho  wrong  equation  for  the  Vikramaditya  era,  the  true  date 
must  be  A.  D.  1169. 



beginning  of.  1170.  This  will  give  a reign  of  22  years  to 
Pritlivi  Raja,  which  is  the  very  term  assigned  to  him  in  all 
the  manuscripts,  at  the  end  of  the  Tomar  dynasty.  It  will 
also  add  about  18  years  to  the  length  of  Anang  Pal’s  reign, 
during  which  time  I suppose  him  to  have  been  tributary  to 
Visala  Deva. 

The  subject  of  the  Chohan  dynasty  has  been  so  much 
confused  by  the  conflicting  accounts  given  by  Colonel  Tod,* 
that  I have  found  it  impossible  to  make  any  satisfactory  ar- 
rangement, either  of  the  names  of  the  Princes,  or  of  the 
lengths  of  their  reigns.  So  far  as  our  information  goes,  the 
only  Chohan  Princes  of  Ajmer,  who  were  at  the  same  time 
actual  Kings  of  Dilli,  were  Visala  Deva  and  Pritlivi  Raja. 
During  the  latter  half  of  Anang  Pal’s  reign,  I consider  him  to 
have  been  only  the  titular  King  of  Dilli,  and  tributary  to  the 
paramount  sovereign  of  Ajmer.  On  his  death  in  A.  D.  1170, 
the  throne  of  Dilli  would  of  course  have  fallen  to  Pritlivi 
Raja  by  his  adoption  as  the  successor  of  the  Tomar  Prince. 
On  Visala’s  death,  which  could  not  have  occurred  earlier  than 
A.  D.  1163,  I infer  that  Someswara  succeeded  to  the  throne 
of  Ajmer.  When  he  was  killed  in  battle  seven  years  after- 
wards, or  in  A.  D.  1170,  the  throne  of  Ajmer  would  have 
fallen  to  Pritlivi  Kaja.  But  in  the  genealogical  lists  between 
Someswara  and  his  son  Pritlivi  Raja  we  find  the  names  of 
Chdhara  Deva  and  Nag  a Deva  (or  Jag  a Deva ),  and  I can 
only  account  for  their  insertion  by  supposing  that  they  were 
the  tributary  Rajas  of  Dilli  under  Prithvi  Raja  as  lord 
paramount.  This  seems  highly  probable  if  we  may  place 
any  dependence  on  the  latter  part  of  Colonel  Tod’s  genealo- 
gical list  of  the  Chohans,  in  which  Chdhara  Deva  is  made 
the  younger  brother  of  Prithvi  Raja.  That  Chdhara,  or 
Chaliada  Deva,  was  a person  of  some  consequence,  we  know 
from  his  coins,  which  are  less  uncommon  than  those  of 
Prithvi  Raja  himself.  Perhaps  Ndga  Deva  may  have  been 
another  brother  or  a near  relative.! 

Colonel  Tod  gives  the  substance  of  an  inscription  discover- 
ed at  Bijoli,  which  is  dated  in  S.  1226,  or  A.  D.  1169, 

# Compare  Tod’s  Rajasthan,  II.,  451,  with  II.,  743,  and  Royal  Asiatic  Society’s  Transac- 
tions, I.,  p.  145. 

t In  a fine  MS.  of  Chaud’s  Prithi  Raj  Raisa  in  my  possession  I find  Prithvi  Raja 
recorded  as  the  son  of  Someswara,  and  the  grandson  of  Visala  Deva,  and  the  7tli  in  descent 
from  Vira-Visala.  This  clears  up  most  of  our  difficulties,  as  we  now  have  a Visala  Deva 
contemporary  with  the  record  of  the  Delhi  Pillar,  a name  which  is  wanting  in  all  the 
other  lists. 



during  the  life-time  of  Someswara.*  In  this  inscription  it  is 
stated  that  Someswara  was  originally  called  Prithvi  Raja, 
hut  “ having  obtained  the  regal  dignity  through  Someswara, 
he  was  thence  called  Someswar.”  Now,  if  the  date  of  this 
inscription  has  been  rightly  read,  it  seems  most  probable  that 
the  Hansi  inscription,  which  mentions  a Prithvi  Raja  in 
S.  1221,  or  A.  1).  1167,  or  just  two  years  earlier,  must  refer  to 
the  father,  who  afterwards  obtained  the  name  of  Someswara, 
and  not  to  the  son,  who  is  popularly  known  as  Pai  Pithora. f 
This  assignment  of  the  Hansi  inscription  to  the  father  is  ren- 
dered certain  by  another  fact  recorded  in  it,  which  has 
escaped  the  notice  of  Colebrooke,  Pell,  and  Tod,  namely, 
that  Kirana , or  Kilhana  of  the  Guhila  or  Graliilot  race, 
was  the  maternal  uncle  of  Prithvi  Raja.  Now,  if  there  is 
one  point  undisputed  in  the  history  of  Rai  Pithora,  it  is  that 
his  mother  was  the  daughter  of  the  Tomar  Raja  Anang  Pal. 
I conclude,  therefore,  that  the  Prithvi  Raja,  whose  mother 
was  a Graliilot,  must  have  been  Someswara,  whose  original 
name,  before  his  accession  to  the  throne,  was  also  Prithvi  Raja. 

With  the  above  explanations,  I now  give  all  the  lists  of 
the  Chohan  dynasty  which  I have  been  able  to  collect, 

b e/  3 

excepting  those  of  Tod  and  Miik-j'i,  the  Khiclii  bard,  which 
disagree  with  the  others  in  so  many  names  that  they  would 
he  of  no  use  for  comparison  : 


Abul  Fazl,  Syad 

Gwalior,  Kumaon, 

Length  of 





Y.  M.  D. 

Bil  Deo 

Visala  Deva 

G 1 4 

Visala  Deva  ... 

Visala  Deva, 

S.  1220  or 

Amara  Gangu  ... 

Ganeeva,  or  Amara 

A.  D.  1163. 


5 2 3 

Keliar  Pal 

Pahadi,  or  Pada 


S 1 5 


Samas,  or  Saveras 

7 4 2 

Someswara  . . . 


S.  A.  D. 

J aliir 

V ehan  De,  or  Bala 



4 4 1 


Nag  Deo 

Jag  Deo,  or  Ja- 

garmangur  . . . 

3 15 

Pithora,  or  Prith- 

vi  Raja 

Priihvi  Raja  ... 

6 11 

Prithvi  Raja. 

40  2 21 

* Rajasthan,  II.,  743. 

t See  Captain  Fell  in  Asiatic  Researches.  XV.,  413  ; and  Tod  in  Royal  Asiatic  Society’s 
Transactions,  1.,  154  and  461. 



On  comparing  these  lists,  I think  that  Bit  Deo  of  Abul  Pazl 
may  he  identified  with  Visala  Devci  of  the  inscription  on 
Piruz  Shah’s  Pillar,  and  that  Sinner  or  Sennas  are  only  cor- 
ruptions of  Someswara.  The  other  names  require  no  re- 

The  reign  of  Prithvi  Raj  has  been  rendered  memorable 
by  three  events  which  form  separate  parts  of  the  rather 
voluminous  work  of  the  bard  Chcnid , named  Prithvi  Bdj- 
Rdsa.  The  work  is  divided  into  several  Khands,  or  books, 
which  are  generally  known  by  the  names  of  the  subjects  of 
which  they  treat  ; thus,  the  Kanoj  Khcnid  gives  the  story  of 
the  forcible  abduction  of  the  not  unwilling  daughter  of  Java 
Chandra,  the  Rahtor  Raja  of  Kanoj ; while  the  Malioha 
Khand  relates  the  various  fortunes  of  the  successful  war 
with  Parmalik  or  Paramdrdi  Deva,  the  Chandel  Raja  of 
Mahoba,  and  the  last  books  are  devoted  to  the  great  struggle 
between  the  Hindus  and  Musulmans,  which  ended  in  the 
final  overthrow  of  Prithvi  Raj,  and  the  establishment  of 
Kutb-ud-din  Aibeg  on  the  throne  of  Dilli  as  a dependant  of 
the  paramount  Sovereign  Muaz-ud-din  Ghori. 

The  date  of  the  abduction  of  the  Kanoj  Princess  may 
be  assigned  with  great  probability  to  the  year  A.  D.  1175, 
as  we  know  from  inscriptions  that  Vijaya  Chandra , the  father 
of  Jay  a Chandra,  was  still  living  in  1172,  and  that  Jaya 
Chandra  had  succeeded  to  the  throne  before  1177.  This 
event  cannot,  therefore,  be  placed  earlier  than  1175  ; and  as 
Prince  Rcunsi,  the  issue  of  this  union,  was  able  to  bear  arms 
in  the  last  fatal  battle  with  the  Musulmans  in  1193,  in  which 
he  was  killed,  it  is  not  possible  to  place  the  date  of  the  ab- 
duction later  than  1175. 

The  date  of  the  great  war  with  the  Chandel  Prince  of 
Mahoba  is  given  in  the  Mahoba  Khand  of  Chand’s  poem  as 
Samvat  1211,  or  A.  D.  1181.  My  copy  of  this  portion  of 
the  poem  was  obtained  in  Mahoba  itself,  and  I have  every 
reason  to  believe  in  the  correctness  of  the  year  named,  as  it 
is  borne  out  by  two  existing  inscriptions  of  Paramdrddi  Deva, 
the  Chandel  Raja,  which  are  dated,  respectivelv,  in  Samvat 
1221  or  A.  D.  1167,  and  S.  1211  or  A.  D.  1181.  The  date 
of  the  final  conquest  of  Dilli  by  the  Musulmans  is  variously 
given  by  the  different  authorities.  Thus  Ibn  Batuta  has 
A.  II.  581,  or  A.  D.  1188;  Abul  Pazl  has  A.  H.  588, 



or  A.  D.  1192 ; and  Perishta  lias  A.  H.  589,  while  Syad 
Alnnad  has  adopted  A.  H.  587,  founded  on  his  reading 
of  the  written  date  on  the  Eastern  Gateway  of  the  Kutb 
Masjid.  He  reads  the  unit  of  this  date  as  Saba,  or  7,  where- 
as I make  it  tisa,  or  9.  The  difference  arises  from  the  va- 
rious reading  of  two  easily  mistakeahle  words  sabd  and  tisd. 
My  attention  was  particularly  drawn  to  this  date  by  Mr. 
Thomas’s  note  on  Syad  Ahmad’s  date,  which,  as  he  says, 
“anticipates  the  epoch  ordinarily  assigned  to  the  Muhamma- 
dan conquest  of  India  by  two  years.”  I examined  this  por- 
tion of  the  inscription  minutely  with  a telescope,  and  I found 
two  dots  or  points,  which  are  omitted  in  Syad  Ahmad’s  litho- 
graphed copy  of  the  inscription,  quite  distinct,  one  over  the 
other,  between  the  words  Sanh  and  iva,  and  immediately  over 
the  unit  of  the  date,  which  is  placed  below  those  words.  If 
these  dots  belong  to  the  unit  of  the  date,  we  must  accept  the 
reading  of  tisa  and  adopt  589  A,  H.  or  A.  D.  1193  for  the 
capture  of  Delhi.* 

The  only  work  which  is  attributed  to  Prithvi  Pmja  is 
the  extensive  fort  to  the  north  and  east  of  Anang  Pal’s 
Lalkot,  which  is  still  called  Kilah  Rai  Rithora,  or  “ Pitlio- 
ra’s  Port.”  Prom  the  north-west  angle  of  Lfilkot  the  lines  of 
llai  Pithora’s  walls  can  still  be  distinctly  traced,  running 
towards  the  north  for  about  half  a mile.  Prom  this  point 
they  turn  to  the  south  of  east  for  one  and  a half  miles,  then 
to  the  south  for  one  mile,  and  lastly,  to  the  west  and  north- 
west for  three-quarters  of  a mile,  where  they  join  the  south- 
west angle  of  Lalkot,  which  being  situated  on  higher  ground 
forms  a lofty  citadel  that  completely  commands  the  Port  of 
Ptai  Pathora.  The  entire  circuit  of  the  walls  of  the  two 
forts  is  4 miles  and  3 furlongs,  or  rather  more  than  half  the 
size  of  the  modern  city  of  Shalijahanabad.f 

Up  to  this  point  I have  endeavoured  to  trace  the  outline 
of  the  history  of  Hindu  Dilli,  partly  from  existing  monu- 
ments, partly  from  inscriptions,  and  partly  from  other  records, 

* This  important  date  had  so  attracted  the  attention  of  Mr.  Thomas,  that  he  erected  a 
scaffolding  for  the  purpose  of  more  carefully  studying  the  original,  and  he  has  since  had  the 
doubtful  passage  examined  by  a most  competent  authority.  As  both  agree  that  the  true 
reading  is  saba  and  not  tisa,  I adopt  the  reading  of  A.  H.  587,  or  A.  D.  as  the  true  date  of 
the  first  capture  of  Dellii  by  the  Muhammadans. — See  Mr.  Thomas’s  Chronicles  of  the  Pathan 
Kings  of  Delhi,  p.  23,  note,  for  full  notice  of  this  date,  which  he  supports  by  the  authority 
of  Hasan  Nizami  and  Nimhaj-us-Siraj. 

f See  Plates  XXV.  and  XXXVI.  for  the  relative  positions  and  plans  of  Ldllcot  and  Rai 
Pithora’s  Fort. 



both  printed  and  manuscript.  The  history  of  Muhammadan 
Dihli,  or  Delhi , according  to  our  corrupt  spelling,  will  be 
found  in  ample  detail  in  Ferislita  and  other  Moslem  authors. 
I will  now,  therefore,  coniine  my  remarks  to  a description  of 
the  many  noble  remains  of  by-gone  days,  which,  either  by 
their  grand  size,  their  solid  strength,  or  their  majestic  beauty, 
still  proudly  testify  that  this  vast  waste  of  ruins  was  once 
Imperial  Delhi,  the  Capital  of  all  India. 


The  most  ancient  monuments  of  Delhi  are  the  two  Stone 
Pillars  bearing  the  edicts  of  Asoka,  both  of  which  were 
brought  to  the  Capital  by  Firuz  Shah  Tughlak,  about 
A.  H.  757,  or  A.  D.  1356.  The  account  of  the  removal  of 
these  pillars  from  their  original  sites  is  given  in  detail  by 
Shams-i-Siraj,  who  was  most  likely  an  eye-witness  of  the  re- 
erection in  Firuzabad,  as  he  records  that  he  was  12  years  of 
age  at  the  time  when  they  were  set  up.*  This  circumstantial 
account  of  a contemporary  writer  at  once  disposes  of  Colonel 
Tod’s  storyf  that  Firuz  Shah’s  Pillar  was  originally  standing 
££  at  Nigambod,  a place  of  pilgrimage  on  the  Jumna,  a few 
miles  below  Delhi,  whence  it  must  have  been  removed  to  its 
present  singular  position.”  Nigambod  still  exists  as  a place 
of  pilgrimage,  being  a ghat  immediately  outside  the  northern 
wall  of  the  city  of  Shahjahanabad.  It  is,  therefore,  above  the 
city  of  Delhi,  instead  of  being  a few  miles  below  it,  as  de- 
scribed by  Colonel  Tod. 

Firuz  Shall  s Pillar,  according  to  Shams-i-Siraj,  was 
brought  from  a place  which  is  variously  called  Topun,  Toper  a, 
Toparsulc,  Toliera,  Tawera , and  Naliera.%  The  place  is  de- 
scribed as  being  “on  the  bank  of  the  Jumna,  in  the  district 
of  Salora,  not  far  from  Khizrabad,  which  is  at  the  foot  of  the 
mountains,  90  koss  from  Delhi.”  The  distance  from  Delhi 
and  the  position  at  the  foot  of  the  mountains  point  out  the 
present  Khizrabad  on  the  Jumna,  just  below  the  spot  where 
the  river  issues  from  the  lower  range  of  Hills,  as  the  place 
indicated  by  Shams-i-Siraj.  Salora  is,  perhaps,  Sidhora,  a 

* Journal  of  Archaeological  Society  of  Delhi,  I.,  74. 
f Rajasthan,  II.,  452. 

t Journal  of  the  Archaeological  Society  of  Delhi,  I.,  pp.  29  and  75.  See  also  Sir  H.  M. 
Elliot’s  Muhammadan  Historians,  by  Dowson,  III.,  p.  350,  where  the  name  of  the  village 
is  given  as  Tobra. 



large  place  only  a few  miles  to  the  west  of  Khizrabad.  From 
the  village  where  it  originally  stood,  the  pillar  was  conveyed 
by  land  on  a truck  to  Khizrabad,  from  whence  it  was  floated 
down  the  Jumna  to  Firuzabad,  or  new  Delhi.  From  the 
above  description  of  the  original  site  of  this  pillar,  I conclude 
that  the  village  from  whence  it  was  brought  was,  perhaps,  the 
present  JPaota,  on  the  western  bank  of  the  Jumna,  and  12 
miles  in  a direct  line  to  the  north-east  of  Khizrabad.  Now, 
in  this  immediate  neighbourhood  on  the  western  bank 
of  the  Jumna,  and  at  a distance  of  66  miles  from  Tkanesar, 
Hwen  Thsang  places  the  ancient  Capital  of  Srughna , which 
was  even  then  (A.  D.  630 — 640)  in  ruins,  although  the 
foundations  were  still  solid.  The  Chinese  pilgrim  describes 
Srughna  as  possessing  a large  Vihdr,  and  a grand  stupa  of 
Asoka’s  time  containing  relics  of  Buddha,  besides  many 
other  stupas  of  Sdriputra  Maudga  lyayana,  and  other  holy 
Buddhists.  The  village  of  Topar,  which  was  the  original  site 
of  Firuz  Shah’s  Pillar,  was  certainly  within  the  limits  of  the 
ancient  kingdom  of  Srughna,  and  I think  it  probable  that 
in  the  work  Snk,  which  is  appended  to  one  of  the  various 
readings  of  the  name  of  the  village  of  Topar,  we  still  have 
a fair  approximation  to  Sughan , the  popular  form  of  the 
Sanskrit  Srughna. 

When  the  pillar  was  removed  from  its  original  site,  a 
large  square  stone  was  found  beneath  it,  which  was  also 
transported  to  Delhi.*  This  stone  was  again  placed  beneath 
the  pillar  in  its  new  situation  on  the  top  of  the  three- storied 
building  called  Firuz  Shah’s  l^otila,  where  it  may  now  be 
seen,  as  a gallery  has  been  pierced  through  the  solid  masonry 
immediately  beneath  the  base  of  the  pillar.  According  to 
Shams-i-Siraj,  the  whole  length  of  the  shaft  was  32  gaz,  of 
which  8 gaz  were  sunk  in  the  building.  As  the  pillar  at 
present  stands,  I found  the  total  height  to  be  42  feet  7 inches, 
of  which  the  sunken  portion  is  only  4 feet  1 inch.  But  the 
lower  portion  of  the  exposed  shaft  to  a height  of  5 feet  is 
still  rough,  and  I have  little  doubt,  therefore,  that  the  whole 
of  the  rough  portion,  9 feet  in  length,  must  have  been  sunk 
in  the  ground  on  its  original  site.  But  according  to  Shams- 
i-Siraj,  even  more  than  this,  or  one-fourth  of  its  whole  length, 
that  is,  10  feet  8 inches,  was  sunk  in  the  masonry  of  Firuz 

* A similar  large  square  stone  wap  found  under  the  Pahladpur  Pillar,  when  it  was 
removed  to  the  grounds  of  Queen’s  College  at  Bauttras. 



Shah’s  Kotila.  This  I believe  was  actually  the  case,  for  on 
the  west  side  of  the  column  there  still  remain  in  situ  the 
stumps  of  two  short  octagonal  granite  pillars  that  would  ap- 
pear to  have  formed  part  of  a cloister  or  open  gallery  around 
a fourth  story,  which  cannot  have  been  less  than  6-|  or  7 feet 
in  height.  I conclude,  therefore,  that  the  statement  of 
Shams-i-Siraj  is  quite  correct. 

When  the  pillar  was  at  last  fixed,  the  “top  was  orna- 
mented with  black  and  white  stone-work  surmounted  by  a 
gilt  pinnacle,  from  which  no  doubt  it  received  its  name  of 
Mindr  Zarin,  or  ‘ Golden  Pillar.’  This  gilt  pinnacle  was  still 
in  its  place  in  A.  D.  1611,  when  Wrilliam  Pinch  entered 
Delhi,  as  he  describes  the  Stone  Pillar  of  Bimsa,  which,  after 
passing  through  three  several  stories,  rising  24  feet  above 
them  all,  having  on  the  top  a globe  surmounted  by  a crescent.” 
The  24  feet  of  this  account  are  probably  the  same  as  the 
24  gaz  of  the  other,  the  gaz  being  only  a fraction  less  than 
16  inches. 

The  great  inscription  of  Asoka,  which  is  engraved  on 
this  pillar,  attracted  the  notice  and  stimulated  the  curiosity 
of  Piruz  Shah,  who  assembled  a number  of  learned  Brahmans 
to  decypher  it,  hut  without  success.  “ Some,  however,  inter- 
preted the  writing  to  signify  that  no  one  would  ever  succeed 
in  removing  the  pillar  from  the  spot  on  which  it  originally 
stood,  until  a King  should  be  horn,  hy  name  Piruz  Shah.” 
This  sort  of  unblushing  mendacity  is  still  hut  too  common 
in  India.  Almost  everywhere  I have  found  Brahmans  ready 
to  tell  me  the  subject  of  Ion  ^inscriptions,  of  which  they  could 
not  possibly  read  a single  letter.  Equally  untrue,  although 
not  so  shameless,  are  the  accounts  of  this  inscription  given 
by  Tom  Coryat.  In  a letter  to  L.  Whittaker,*  he  says — “I 
have  been  in  a city  of  this  country  called  Delee,  where 
Alexander  the  Great  joined  battle  with  Porus,  King  of  India, 
and  defeated  him,  and  where,  in  memory  of  his  victory,  he 
caused  to  be  erected  a brazen  pillar,  which  remains  there  to 
this  day.”  The  same  story,  with  additions,  was  repeated  to 
the  unsuspecting  Chaplain  Edward  Terry,  f who  says — “ I was 
told  by  Tom  Coryat  (who  took  special  note  of  this  place) 
that  he,  being  in  the  city  of  Delee,  observed  a very  great 

* Kerr’s  Voyages  and  Travels,  IX.,  423. 
+ Journal,  p.  81. 



pillar  of  marble,  with  a Greek  inscription  upon  it,  which 
time  hath  almost  quite  worn  out,  erected  (as  he  supposed) 
there  and  then  by  Great  Alexander  to  preserve  the  memory 
of  that  famous  victory.”  This  erroneous  opinion  of  Coryat 
was  adopted  by  most  of  the  early  English  travellers,  as 
noticed  by  Purchas,*  who  states  that  these  inscriptions  are  in 
Greek  and  Hebrew,  and  that  some  affirm  the  pillar  was 
erected  by  Alexander  the  Great.  Coryat’s  mistake  about  the 
Greek  most  probably  arose  from  an  actual  inspection  of  the 
inscription,  in  which  he  would  naturally  have  recognized  the 
Old  Pali  th,  chh,  t,  k,  g,  r , b,  j,  and  e , as  Greek  letters.  The 
similarity  struck  James  Prinsep  also.  A noteable  exception 
to  the  other  English  travellers  is  William  Einch,  who  simply 
states  that  “ it  has  inscriptions.” 

The  mistakes  that  have  been  made  about  this  column  are, 
however,  not  confined  to  its  inscriptions,  as  we  have  seen 
above,  were  Coryat  calls  it  a t;  brazen  pillar.”  Strange  to 
say  a similar  mistake  has  been  made  by  the  generally  ac- 
curate Bishop  Heber,  who  calls  it  “ a high  black  pillar  of 
cast-metal and,  again,  in  describing  the  iron  pillar,  he 
calls  it  a metal  pillar  like  that  in  Eiruz  Shah’s  Castle,  t 
Again  Colonel  Tod  has  identified  this  pillar  with  the 
Nmambod  column  alluded  to  bv  the  bard  Chand  “ as  telling  the 
fame  of  the  Chohan.”  It  is  quite  possible  that  some  other 
pillar  may  once  have  stood  at  IS  igambod ; but  as  the  golden 
column  of  Eiruz  really  does  “ tell  the  fame  of  the  Chohan,” 
and  as  its  inscriptions  were  recorded  only  thirty  years  prior 
to  Chand’s  death,  it  seems  mo|  probable  that  liis  allusion 
must  be  to  this  particular  pillar.  The  name  of  Xigambod 
may,  perhaps,  be  a corruption  of  the  real  name  of  the  place 
where  the  column  then  stood,  or  an  ignorant  interpolation  in 
the  text  of  a date  later  than  Eiruz  Shah. 

The  “ Golden  Pillar”  is  a single  shaft  of  pale  pinkish 
sand-stone,  42  feet  7 inches  in  length,  of  which  the  upper 
portion,  35  feet  in  length,  has  received  a very  high  polish, 
while  the  remainder  is  left  quite  rough.  Its  upper  diameter 
is  25'3  inches,  and  its  lower  diameter  38'8  inches,  the  diminu- 
tion being  *39  inch  per  foot.  Its  weight  is  rather  more  than 
27  tons.  In  its  dimensions  it  is  more  like  the  Allahabad 

* Kerr,  VIII.,  293,  note  6. 
f Journal,  II.,  pp.  291—307. 



pillar  than  any  other,  £>ut  it  tapers  much  more  rapidly 
towards  the  top,  and  is,  therefore,  less  graceful  in  its  outline. 

There  are  two  principal  inscriptions  on  Firuz  Shah’s 
pillar,  besides  several  minor  records  of  pilgrims  and  travellers 
from  the  first  centuries  of  the  Christian  era  down  to  the 
present  time.  The  oldest  inscriptions  for  which  the  pillar 
was  originally  erected  comprise  the  well  known  edicts  of 
Asoka,  which  were  promulgated  in  the  middle  of  the  third 
century  B.  C.  in  the  ancient  Pali,  or  spoken  language  of 
the  day.  The  alphabetical  characters,  which  are  of  the  oldest 
form  that  has  yet  been  found  in  India,  are  most  clearly  and 
beautifully  cut,  and  there  are  only  a few  letters  of  the  whole 
record  lest  by  the  peeling  off  of  the  surface  of  the  stone. 
The  inscription  ends  with  a short  sentence,  in  which  King 
Asoka  directs  the  setting  up  these  monoliths  in  different 
parts  of  India  as  follows  :*  “ Let  this  religious  edict  be 

engraved  on  stone  pillars  ( sila  thambha)  and  stone  tablets 
( sila  phalaka)  that  it  may  endure  for  ever.”  In  this 
amended  passage  we  have  a distinct  allusion  to  the  rock 
inscriptions,  as  well  as  to  the  pillar  inscriptions.  As  this 
is  the  longest  and  most  important  of  all  the  pillar  inscrip- 
tions of  Asoka,  I made  a careful  impression  of  the  whole 
for  comparison  with  James  Prinsep’s  published  text.  The 
record  consists  of  four  distinct  inscriptions  on  the  four 
sides  of  the  column  facing  the  cardinal  points,  and  of  one 
long  inscription  immediately  below,  which  goes  completely 
round  the  pillar.  I may  mention  that  the  word  Ajakdndni, 
at  the  end  of  the  7th  lir#  south  face,  was  not  omitted 
“ accidentally,”  as  James  Prinsep  supposed,  by  the  original 
engraver,  but  has  been  lost  by  the  peeling  away  of  the 
stone  for  about  4 inches.  The  vowel  i attached  to  the 
final  letter  is  still  quite  distinct.  The  penultimate  word 
on  the  eastern  face  is  not  agnim,  as  doubtfully  read  by 
Prinsep,  but  abhyum,  and,  as  he  rightly  conjectured,  it  is 
the  same  word  that  begins  the  19th  line.  The  last  word  in 
the  11th  line,  which  puzzled  Prinsep,  is  not  atikatci,  but 
atikantam , the  same  as  occurs  near  the  beginning  of  the  15th 
line.  The  few  corrections  which  I have  noticed  here  show 
the  accuracy  of  Bournouf’s  opinion,  that  a new  collation  of 

* See  James  Prinsep  in  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1837,  p.  609.  He  reads  sila~ 
dJuUaMni,  instead  of  phalakdni,  which  is  quite  distinct  on  the  pillar. 



tlie  pillar  inscriptions  would  be  of  the  greatest  value.  I am 
happy  to  say  that  I have  now  made  new  copies  of  the  in- 
scriptions on  the  pillars  at  Delhi,  Arardj,  and  Navandgarh , for 
collation  by  competent  scholars. 

The  last  10  lines  of  the  eastern  face,  as  well  as  the  whole 
of  the  continuous  inscription  round  the  shaft,  are  peculiar  to 
the  Delhi  pillar.  There  is  a marked  difference  also  in  the 
appearance  of  this  part  of  the  inscription.  The  characters  are 
all  thinner  and  less  boldly  cut ; the  vowel  marks  are  general- 
ly sloping  instead  of  being  horizontal  or  perpendicular,  and 
the  letters/,  t,  s and  h are  differently  formed  from  those  of 
the  preceding  part  of  the  inscription.  These  new  forms  are 
exactly  the  same  as  those  of  the  rock  inscription  near  Khalsi, 
on  the  Jumma,  which  is  only  a few  miles  above  Daota,  the 
probable  site  from  whence  the  pillar  was  brought  by  Piruz 

The  second  inscription  is  that  which  records  the  vic- 
tories of  the  Cliohan  Prince  Visala  Deva,  whose  power 
extended  “ from  Himadri  to  Vindhya.”  This  record  of  the 
fame  of  the  Cliohan  consists  of  two  separate  portions,  the 
shorter  one  being  placed  immediately  above  Asoka’s  edicts, 
and  the  longer  one  immediately  below  them.  But  as  both 
are  dated  in  the  same  year,  viz.,  S.  1220,  or  A.  D.  1163,  and 
refer  to  the  same  Prince,  they  may  be  considered  as  forming 
only  one  inscription.  The  upper  portion,  which  is  placed 
very  high,  is  engraved  in  much  larger  characters  than  the 
lower  one.  A translation  of  t%is  inscription  was  published 
by  Colebrooke,  and  his  rendering  of  the  text  has  been  verified 
by  H.  H.  Wilson  from  a copy  made  by  Mr.  Thomas.*  The 
reading  of  Sri  Sallakshana  proposed  by  Mr.  Thomas  is  un- 
doubtedly correct,  instead  of  Sri  Mad  Lakshana,  as  formerly 
read.  I would  suggest  also  that  the  rendering  of  Chaliumana 
tilaka,  as  “most  eminent  of  the  tribe  which  sprang  from 
the  arms”  (of  Brahma),  seems  to  me  much  less  forcible  than 
the  simple  translation  of  “ Chief  of  the  Chdhumdns”  or 
Cliohan  tribe.  I believe  also  that  there  is  an  error  in  referring 
the  orgin  of  the  Chohans  to  Brahma,  as  Muk-ji , the  Bard 
of  the  Kliichi  Chohans,  distinctly  derives  them  from  the 
Anal  kund,  or  fount  of  fire  on  Mount  Abu,  an  origin  which 

* Colebrooke  in  Asiatic  Researches,  III.,  130;  and  Thomas’s  Prinsep’s  Essays,  I.,  335. 



corresponds  with  that  assigned  to  them  by  Colonel  Tod.  It 
is  Chdluk  Bao,  the  founder  of  the  Chdlukyci , or  Soldnkhi 
tribe,  that  is  fabled  to  have  sprung  from  Brahma. 

The  minor  inscriptions  on  Piruz  Shah’s  Pillar  are  of 
little  interest  or  importance.  They  are,  however,  of  different 
ages,  and  the  more  ancient  records  must  have  been  inscribed 
while  the  pillar  yet  stood  on  its  original  site,  under  the  hills 
to  the  north  of  Klrizrabad.  One  of  the  oldest  is  the  name 
of  Sri  Bhadra  Mitra , or  Subhadramitra,  in  characters  of  the 
Gupta  era.  This  is  written  in  very  small  letters,  as  are  also 
two  others  of  the  same  age.  In  larger  letters  of  a somewhat 
later  date,  there  are  several  short  inscriptions,  of  which  the 
most  legible  is  Surya  Vishnu  Subarnakakana.  A second 
begins  with  Bara  Singha  Subarnakakana,  the  remainder 
being  illegible,  with  exception  of  the  word  Kuvnara.  A third 
reads  Charma  Subana,  the  second  letter  being  somewhat 
doubtful.  This  record  is  extended  in  another  place  to  Charma 
Subanakshdra.  Of  a much  later  date  is  the  name  of  the 
Saiva  mendicant  Siddh  Bhayankarnath  Jogi,  followed  by  a 
trisul.  The  name  of  this  wandering  mendicant  is  also  re- 
corded in  the  very  same  characters,  hut  simply  as  “ Bhayan- 
kar  Bath,”  in  one  of  the  Bardbar  caves  in  Bihar.*  On  the 
northern  face  there  are  two  still  later  inscriptions  in  modern 
Nagari,  both  of  which  hear  the  same  date  of  "Wednesday, 
13th,  waning  moon  of  Chaitra,  in  Samvat  1581,  or  A.  I). 
1521.  The  longer  inscription  contains  the  name  of  Suritan 
Ibrahim,  or  Sultan  Ibrahim  Lodi,  who  reigned  from  A.  D. 
1517  to  1525.  » 

The  second  of  Asoka’s  Delhi  Pillars  is  now  lying  in  five 
pieces  near  Hindu  Bao’s  house  on  the  top  of  the  hill  to 
the  north-west  of  Shahjahanabad.  The  whole  length  of  these 
pieces  was  32f  feet,  but  the  upper  end  of  the  middle  piece, 
which  was  inscribed  with  Asoka’s  edicts,  was  sawn  off  some 
years  ago,  and  sent  to  Calcutta,  where  it  may  now  he  seen 
in  the  Asiatic  Society's  Museum. f The  portion  of  the  shaft 
that  was  below  the  inscription  still  measures  18  feet,  and  that 
which  was  above  it,  12  feet.  As  the  end  of  the  shaft  is  still 
rough,  it  seems  probable  that  the  polished  portion  could  not 

* See  p.  22,  and  Plate  XX. 

t This  has  now  been  returned  to  Delhi,  and  the  pillar  has  been  restored  : but  I think 
that  it  ought  rather  to  hare  been  set  up  at  Alirat.  from  whence  it  was  originally  brought 
by  Firuz  Shah. 



have  been  more  than  32  feet  in  height,  which  is  somewhat 
less  than  that  of  the  other  known  pillars  of  Asoka.  Indeed, 
this  pillar  is  described  by  Shams-i-Siraj  as  being  smaller  than 
the  other,  a description  which  can  apply  only  to  its  height, 
as  its  diameter  is  somewhat  greater.  From  its  broken  state 
it  is  not  easy  to  obtain  correct  measurements  of  its  thickness. 
At  the  point  where  the  inscribed  piece  was  sawn  off,  the 
diameter  is  33 '41  inches ; and  my  measurements  make  the 
upper  diameter  29^  inches,  and  lower  diameter  of  the 
smoothed  portion  35‘82  inches.  The  rough  thick  end  is 
about  38  inches  in  diameter.  These  measurements  make 
the  diminution  of  the  pillar  just  one-fifth  of  an  inch  per 

According  to  Shams-i-Siraj  this  column  was  brought 
from  Mirat  by  Firuz  Shah,  and  erected  near  its  present  posi- 
tion in  the  Kushak  Shikar,  or  “ hunting  palace.”  The  posi- 
tion of  the  palace  has  already  been  determined  by  the  re- 
searches of  Messrs.  Cope  and  Lewis  ;*  hut  the  following 
statements  of  William  Finch  will  place  this  identification  of 
site  beyond  all  dispute.  In  A.  D.  1611  he  describes  the  city 
(that  is,  of  Shir  Shah)  as  being  2 koss,  or  2|  miles,  iu 
length  from  gate  to  gate,  and  about  2 koss  from  thence  he 
places  “ the  ruins  of  a hunting  seat  or  mole  (Mahal)  built 
by  Sultan  JBemsa,  a great  Indian  Sovereign.”!  This  descrip- 
tion agrees  exactly  with  the  position  of  the  broken  pillar, 
which  is  about  2f  miles  to  the  north-west  of  the  Lai  Dur- 
wdza , or  north  gate  of  the  old  city  of  Shir  Shah,  which  is 
itself  about  2%  miles  distant  from'  the  south  gate,  to  the  west- 
ward of  Dinpanah,  or  Parana  Kilah. 

According  to  the  popular  belief,  this  pillar  was  thrown 
down  by  an  accidental  explosion  of  a powder  magazine  in 
the  time  of  Farokhsir,  who  reigned  from  A.  D.  1713  to  1719. 
This  tradition  is  rendered  almost  certain  by  the  statements 
of  Padre  Tieffentlialer,  who  resided  in  India  between  A.  I). 
1743  and  17S6.  He  saw  the  pillar  lying  just  as  it  is  now  in 
five  pieces  ; but  he  was  informed  that  it  was  standing  erect  not 
long  before,  and  that  it  was  thrown  down  by  an  explosion  of 

* Journal  of  Archaeological  Society  of  Delhi, 
f Kerr’s  Voyages  and  Travels,  VIII.,  292. 



The  inscriptions  on  this  pillar  are  very  imperfect,  owing 
to  the  mutilated  and  worn  surface  of  the  stone.  Such  por- 
tions as  remain  have  been  carefully  examined  by  James 
Prinsep,  who  found  them  to  be  “ so  precisely  the  duplicates” 
of  the  other  inscription  that  he  did  not  think  “ it  worth  while 
to  make  them  the  subject  of  a separate  note.”*  The  remaining 
portions,  which  correspond  with  parts  of  the  inscriptions 
on  the  north,  south,  and  west  faces  of  the  other  pillar,  have 
been  lithographed  by  Prinsep  in  Plate  XLII.,  Yol.  VI.  of 
his  Journal. 

The  Iron  Pillar  of  Delhi,  which  is  the  next  work  in 
point  of  antiquity,  is  one  of  the  most  curious  monuments  in 
India.  Many  large  works  in  metal  were  no  doubt  made  in 
ancient  times,  such,  for  instance,  as  the  celebrated  Colussus 
of  Rhodes,  and  the  gigantic  statues  of  the  Buddhists,  which 
are  described  by  Hwen  Thsang.  But  all  of  these  were  of 
brass  or  copper,  all  of  them  were  hollow,  and  they  were  all 
built  up  of  pieces  rivetted  together,  whereas  the  Delhi  Pillar 
is  a solid  shaft  of  wrought  iron  upwards  of  16  inches  in  dia- 
meter, and  upwards  of  40  feet  in  length.  It  is  true  that  there 
are  flaws  in  many  parts,  which  shew  that  the  welding  is  imper- 
fect ; but  when  we  consider  the  extreme  difficulty  of  manu- 
facturing a pillar  of  such  vast  dimensions,  our  wonder  will 
not  be  diminished  by  knowing  that  the  welding  of  the  bar  is 
defective.  The  total  height  of  the  pillar  above  ground  is  22 
feet,  but  the  smooth  shaft  is  only  15  feet,  the  capital  being  3^ 
feet,  and  the  rough  part  of  the  shaft  below  also  3-|  feet. 
But  its  depth  under  ground  is  asserted  to  be  considerably 
greater  than  its  height  above  ground,  as  a recent  excavation 
is  said  to  have  been  carried  down  to  26  feet  without  reaching 
the  foundation  on  which  the  pillar  rests. f The  whole  length 
of  the  Iron  Pillar  is,  therefore,  upwards  of  48  feet,  but  how 
much  more  is  not  known,  although  it  must  be  considerable, 
as  the  pillar  is  said  not  to  have  been  loosened  by  the  excava- 
tion. I think,  therefore,  it  is  highly  probable  that  the  whole 
length  is  not  less  than  60  feet.  The  lower  diameter  of  the 
shaft  is  164  inches,  and  the  upper  diameter  is  12‘05  inches, 
the  diminution  being  ’29  of  an  inch  per  foot.  The  pillar 
contains  about  80  cubic  feet  of  metal,  and  weighs  upwards 
of  17  tons. 

* Journal  of  Asiatic  Society,  Bengal,  VI.,  794. 

t Mr.  Cooper  told  me  26  feet,  but  the  man  in  charge  assured  me  that  the  actual  depth 
reached  was  35  feet. 




When  I wrote  this  report  in  1863  I described  the  pillar 
as  formed  of  “ mixed  metal.”  This  I did  on  the  authority  of 
the  late  Mr.  Tred.  Cooper,  Deputy  Commissioner  of  Delhi. 
He  was  then  preparing  a hand-hook  for  Delhi,  in  which  I 
find  the  pillar  is  thus  described — “ The  celebrated  Loha-ka-ldt 
or  iron  pillar,  which  is,  however,  a misnomer,  for  it  is  a 
compound  metal  resembling  bronze.”  On  thinking  over 
this  question  some  months  afterwards  it  struck  me  that 
a bronze  pillar  would  never  have  escaped  the  rapacity  of  the 
Muhammadan  conquerors.  I,  therefore,  obtained  a small 
hit  from  the  rough  lower  part  of  the  pillar,  which  I sub- 
mitted to  Dr.  Murray  Thomson  for  analysis,  who  informed 
me  that  the  metal  was  “ pure  malleable  iron  of  7'66  specific 
gravity.”  I have  since  referred  to  various  hooks  to  see  what 
account  was  given  of  this  pillar  by  different  tourists  ; and  I 
find  that  the  opinion  that  the  pillar  was  made  of  mixed 
metal  or  bronze  has  certainly  prevailed  since  the  beginning 
of  the  century.*  But  it  is  most  probably  of  even  older  date, 
as  the  notorious  Tom  Coryat  speaks  of  the  brazen  pillar 
which  he  had  seen  at  “ Delee.”  There  can  be  little  doubt 
that  this  was  also  the  Native  belief  in  former  times,  as  it 
certainly  is  at  present ; for  I presume  that  the  early  English 
residents  at  Delhi  adopted  what  they  were  told  by  the  people 
without  either  question  or  examination,  although  the  one  con- 
tinued to  call  it  the*  Lohi-ki-lat,  and  the  other  the  “ Iron 
Pillar.”  The  belief,  perhaps,  arose  from  the  curious  yellow 
appearance  of  the  upper  part  of  the  shaft,  which  I myself 
observed,  and  which  induced  me  to  accept  Mr.  Cooper’s 

The  Iron  Pillar  records  its  own  history  in  a deeply  cut 
Sanskrit  inscription  of  six  lines  on  its  western  face.  The 
inscription  has  been  translated  by  James  Prinsep,  who 
remarks  that  “ the  pillar  is  called  the  arm  of  fame”  ( Kirtti 
bhuja)  “ of  Baja  Dlidva,  and  the  letters  cut  upon  it  are  called 
the  typical  cuts  inflicted  on  his  enemies  by  his  sword,  writing 
his  immortal  fame.”t  It  is  stated  that  he  subdued  a people 

* In  1805  tile  pillar  was  seen  by  a lady,  “ Tour  in  the  Upper  Provinces  by  A.  D.,”  p.  105, 
who  describes  it  as  “the  wonderful  brazen  pillar.”  Bishop  Heber,  “Travels,  II.,  291,  307,’’ 
calls  it  a “ metal  pillar”  or  a “black  pillar  of  cast  metal.”  In  1834  Miss  Emma  Roberts, 
“ Views  in  India,  I.,  40,”  speaks  of  it  as  “ a pillar  of  mixed  metal and  in  1844  Colonel 
Sleeman,  “ Rambles,  II.,  256,”  writes  that  the  small  pillar  is  of  bronze,  or  a metal  which 
resembles  bronze,  and  is  softer  than  brass. 

t Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  VII.,  p.  630. 



on  the  Sindhu,  named  Vahlikas,  and  “ obtained  with  his  own 
arm  an  undivided  sovereignty  on  the  earth  for  a long  period.’’ 
The  above  is  the  whole  of  the  meagre  information  that  can 
be  gathered  from  this  inscription,  save  the  hare  fact  that  the 
Raja  was  a worshipper  of  Vishnu.  The  date  of  the  inscrip- 
tion is  referred  by  James  Prinsep  to  the  third  or  fourth 
century  after  Christ ; but  Mr.  Thomas  considers  that  this  is 
“ too  high  an  antiquity  for  the  style  of  writing  employed  on 
the  monument.”  I agree,  however,  with  Prinsep,  as  the 
characters  appear  to  me  to  be  exactly  the  same  as  those  of 
the  Gupta  inscriptions.  I have  already  suggested  the  year 
A.  D.  319,  which  is  the  initial  point  of  the  Palabhi  or  Gupta 
era,  as  an  approximate  date,  as  I think  it  not  improbable 
that  the  Raja  may  have  assisted  in  the  downfall  of  the 
powerful  Gupta  dynasty.  I read  his  name  preferably  as 
Bhdva,  the  letter  bli  having  got  closed  by  the  accidental  slip 
of  the  punching  chisel.  The  letter  is  different  from  every 
other  dli  in  the  inscription. 

According  to  universal  tradition,  the  Iron  Pillar  was 
erected  by  Bilan  Deo,  or  Anang  Pal,  the  founder  of  the 
Tomara  dynasty,  who  was  assured  by  a learned  Brahman 
that,  as  the  foot  of  the  pillar  had  been  driven  so  deep 
into  the  ground  that  it  rested  on  the  head  of  Vasuki, 
King  of  the  Serpents,  who  supports  the  earth ; it  was  now 
immoveable,  and  that  dominion  would  remain  in  his  family 
as  long  as  the  pillar  stood.  But  the  Raja,  doubting  the 
truth  of  the  Brahman’s  statement,  ordered  the  pillar  to 
be  dug  up,  when  the  foot  of  it  was  found  wet  with 
the  blood  of  the  serpent  king,  whose  head  it  had  pierced. 
Regretting  his  unbelief,  the  Iron  Pillar  was  again  raised ; 
but,  owing  to  the  king’s  former  incredulity,  every  plan  now 
failed  in  fixing  it  firmly,  and,  in  spite  of  ail  his  efforts,  it  still 

(remained  loose  [dhUa)  in  the  ground,  and  this  is  said  to  have 
been  the  origin  of  the  name  of  the  ancient  city  of  Bliili. 

This  tradition  has  been  variously  reported  by  different 
authorities,  but  the  main  points  are  the  same  in  all.  Colonel 
Tod  states  that  the  Iron  Pillar  is  said  to  be  resting  on  the  head 
of  the  Sahes  Nag,  who  is  the  same  as  Vasuki,  the  Serpent  King. 
A lady  traveller,  who  visited  Delhi  between  1801  and  1814, 
heard  the  tradition  in  a somewhat  different  way.*  A Brahman 
told  the  king  that  if  he  could  place  the  seat  of  his  govern- 
ment on  the  head  of  the  snake  that  supports  the  world, 

* “ Tour  in  the  Upper  Provinces,”  by  A.  D.,  p.  166. 


liis  kingdom  would  last  for  ever.  Tlie  Iron  Pillar  was 
accordingly  driven  into  the  ground  on  its  present  site,  under 
the  superintendence  of  the  Brahman,  who  announced 
that  the  lucky  spot  had  been  found.  On  hearing  this,  a 
courtier,  jealous  of  the  Brahman’s  influence,  declared  that 
the  pillar  was  not  placed  over  the  serpent’s  head,  but  that  he 
could  point  out  the  true  place,  which  he  had  seen  in  a dream. 
The  pillar  was  accordingly  taken  up  by  the  Baja’s  order, 
and,  agreeably  to  the  Brahman’s  prediction,  the  foot  of  it 
was  found  wet  with  the  blood  of  the  serpent’s  head.  This  tra- 
dition is  also  imperfectly  related  in  Purchas’s  Pilgrims,  on  the 
authority  of  English  travellers  who  visited  India  during  the 
reigns  of  Jahangir  and  Shahjahan.  Purchas  states  that  the 
Rase  (Baja)  who  founded  Delhi,  “ by  advice  of  his  magicians, 
tried  the  ground  by  driving  an  iron  stake,  which  came  up 
bloody,  having  wounded  a snake.  This  the  Ronde  (Pande  or 
Pandit),  or  magician,  said  was  a fortunate  sign.”*  In  all 
these  different  versions  of  the  erection  of  the  Iron  Pillar,  the 
main  points  of  the  story  are  the  same,  and  the  popular  belief 
in  this  tradition  is  confirmed  by  the  well  known  verse — 

“ KtlU  to  dMlli  bliai , 

“ Tomar  bhaya  mat  hin .” 

“ The  pillar  has  become  loose, 

“ The  Tomar’s  wish  will  not  he  fulfilled.”! 

This  tradition  is  related  in  a more  poetical  form  by 
Kharg  Bai,  who  wrote  in  the  reign  of  Shahjahan.  Accord- 
ing to  him,  the  Tomar  Prince  was  provided  by  the  sage  Vyds 
with  a golden  nail,  or  spike,  25  fingers  in  length,  which  he 
was  told  to  drive  into  the  ground.  At  a lucky  moment,  on 
the  13th  day  of  the  waning  moon  of  Vaisdkh,  in  the  Samvat 
year  792,  or  A.  D.  736,  when  the  moon  was  in  the  mansion 
of  Abhijit , the  spike  was  driven  into  the  ground  by  the  Baja. 
Then  said  Vyas  to  the  King — 

“ Turn  se  raj  kadi  jaega  nahi, 

“ Yih  khunti  Vasag  ki  mdtlie  gadlii  haiR 
“ Ke’er  will  thy  kingdom  be  besped, 

“ The  spike  hath  pierced  Vasuki’s  head.” 

* Kerr's  Voyages  and  Travels,  VIII.,  292,  note. 

t My  assistant,  Mr.  J.  D.  Beglar,  has  pointed  out  to  me  that  tomar  is  a common  con- 
traction for  tumhdra,  “ your.”  I believe,  therefore,  that  a pun  is  intended,  and  that  the 
second  line  may  be  translated — “Your  wish  will  not  be  fulfilled.” 



Vyas  liad  no  sooner  departed,  than  the  incredulous  Raja 
boldly  declared  bis  disbelief  in  the  sage’s  announcement, 
when  immediately 

“Bilan  Be  khunti  uJehdrh  deJchi, 

“ Tab  loliu  se  chuchdti  nikali.” 

“ He  saw  the  spike  thrown  on  the  ground, 

“ Blood-dropping  from  the  serpent’s  wound.” 

The  sage  was  recalled  by  the  horrified  king,  who  was  directed 
to  drive  the  stake  into  the  ground  a second  time.  Again  be 
struck,  but  the  spike  penetrated  only  nineteen  fingers,  and 
remained  loose  in  the  ground.  Once  more  then  the  sage 
addressed  the  Raja  prophetically, — “Like  the  spike  ( Icilli ) 
which  you  have  driven,  your  dynasty  will  be  unstable  (dllli), 
and  after  ‘ nineteen’  generations  it  will  be  supplanted  by  the 
Chohans,  and  they  by  the  Turkans.”  Bilan  Be  then  became 
King  of  Billi,  and  with  bis  descendants  held  the  throne  for 
nineteen  generations,  according  to  the  number  of  fingers’ 
lengths  which  the  spike  bad  been  driven  into  the  ground. 

What  was  the  origin  of  this  tradition,  and  at  what  time 
it  first  obtained  currency,  may  never,  perhaps,  be  known ; but 
I think  we  are  justified  in  hazarding  a guess  that  the  long 
reign  of  the  Tomar  dynasty  must  first  have  led  to  an  opinion 
of  its  durability  which  would  then  have  been  naturally 
compared  with  the  evident  stability  with  which  the  Iron 
Pillar  was  fixed  in  the  ground.  We  have  an  exactly  paral- 
lel case  in  the  well  known  saying  about  Rome  and  the 
Coliseum — “ Quamdiu  stabit  Colyseus,  stabit  et  Boma  quando 
cadit  Colyseus  cadit  Boma which  the  verse  of  Byron  has 
rendered  famous. — 

“ While  stands  the  Coliseum,  Rome  shall  stand, 
“When  falls  the  Coliseum,  home  shall  fall.” 

This,  indeed,  is  the  oldest  form  of  the  Indian  tradition  that 
I have  been  able  to  trace.  When  the  Muhammadan  con- 
queror first  took  possession  of  Belbi,  be  was  informed  that 
the  inscription  on  the  Iron  Pillar  declared  that  the  Hindu 
rule  would  last  as  long  as  the  pillar  remained  standing ; 
on  bearing  which,  to  show  bis  contempt  of  the  prophecy,  the 
pround  victor  allowed  the  pillar  to  stand.  This  same  story 
must  have  been  told  to  Bishop  Heber,  but  be  has  jumbled  it 



up  with  liis  account  of  Firuz  Shah’s  Pillar.*  That  the  story 
wdiicli  he  heard  must  have  belonged  to  the  Iron  Pillar  is 
rendered  certain  hy  his  referring  it  to  the  period  of  “the 
conquest  of  the  country  by  the  Musulmans.”  About  the 
same  time  also  a similar  story  was  heard  by  Major  Archer,! 
who  records  that,  “ as  long  as  the  pillar  stood,  so  long  would 
Hindustan  flourish.”  At  a later  date,  a similar  story  was 
repeated  to  Mrs.  Colin  Mackenzie,!  who  says  that  the  Iron 
Pillar  bears  a Sanskrit  inscription,  “the  purport  of  which 
is  that,  as  long  as  this  pillar  stands,  the  Raj  or  kingdom  has 
not  finally  departed  from  the  Hindus.”  Lastly,  Syad  Ahmad 
relates  that  the  pillar  was  driven  into  the  head  of  Vasuki , 
King  of  the  Snakes,  to  make  his  empire  lasting. 

If  I am  right  in  ascribing  the  origin  of  this  tradition  to 
a late  period  in  the  history  of  the  Tomars,  when  the  long 
duration  of  their  rule  had  induced  people  to  compare  its 
stability  with  that  of  the  Iron  Pillar,  I think  that  the  saying 
may  be  referred  with  considerable  probability  to  the  pros- 
perous reign  of  Anang  Pal  II.,  whose  name  is  inscribed  on 
the  shaft  with  the  date  of  Samvat  1109  or  A.  L).  1052. 

The  account  given  above  was  written  in  1863,  shortly 
after  which  I found  the  original  version  of  the  story  in  the 
3rd  book  of  my  copy  of  Ckand’s  Prithi  Paj  Paisa,  which 
is  appropriately  named  KilU-dhilli-kathd,  or  “ story  of  the 
Loose  Pillar.”  Chand,  however,  refers  the  event  to  the  time 
of  the  last  Anang  Pal,  who  wished  to  ascertain  the  fortu- 
nate hour  for  holding  a great  festival  in  honour  of  the  birth 
of  his  grandson,  Prithi  Paj.  He  enquired  from  Yyas,  a 
Jagjoti  Brahman,  who  after  a short  consideration  replied — 
“Now  is  the  lucky  time,  your  dynasty  will  become  immove- 
able, and  its  root  will  strike  into  the  head  of  Seshnag.§ 
But  the  Raja  was  incredulous,  when  Yyas  taking  an  iron 
spike  drove  it  down  60  lingers  deep  until  it  reached  the 
serpent’s  head,Y  and  drawing  it  out  he  showed  it  to  the 
Paja  covered  with  blood.  Then  addressing  Anang  Pal,  he 
said — “ Yr our  kingdom  like  the  spike  has  became  unstable.” 

* Journal  II.,  291. 

+ Tour  in  Upper  India,  I.,  121. 

$ 2nd  edition,  p.  47 

Seshnag  or  Vasuki  is  the  King  of  the  Serpents,  on  whose  thousand  heads  the  earth 
itself  is  said  to  be  supported. 

H Sutlisu  cingula  lohah  killtya,  Sukar  Sesn&gli  sir  milUga. 



Thus  saith  the  Seer  Yyas, 

Things  that  must  come  to  pass : 

Now  the  Tomars,  next  Chohdns , 

And  shortly  after  the  Turbans* 

The  Raja  in  a rage  expelled  Yyas,  who  retired  to  Ajmer, 
where  he  was  hospitably  received  by  the  Chohans  on  account 
of  his  prophecy  in  favour  of  their  race. 

The  remaining  inscriptions  on  the  Iron  Pillar  are 
numerous  but  unimportant.  There  are  two  records  of  the 
Cliolian  Itaja  Chatra  Sinha,  both  dated  in  Samvat  1883,  or 
A.  D.  1826.  They  state  that  the  Raja  was  descended  from 
Rrithivi  Raja  in  29  generations,  which  is  quite  possible, 
although  the  period  allowed  for  each  generation  is  under  23 
years.  The  date  of  Prithivi  Raja  is  given  as  Samvat  1851,  or 
A.  D.  1091,  which  is  just  99  years  too  early,  an  amount  of 
error  which  agrees  with  the  false  dates  which  have  been  in- 
serted  in  the  text  of  the  Prithi  R6j  Rasa  of  the  Bard  Chand. 
There  is  also  another  modern  Nagari  inscription  of  six  lines, 
dated  in  Samvat  1767,  or  A.  D.  1710,  of  the  Bundela  Rajas  of 
Chanderi.  Below  this  there  are  two  Persian  inscriptions, 
dated  in  A.  H.  1060  and  1061,  or  A.  D.  1651-52,  which  merely 
record  the  names  of  visitors. 

The  only  other  remains  of  Hindu  Delhi  are  the  nu- 
merous pillars  which  form  the  colonnades  of  the  Court  of  the 
Great  Masjid  close  to  the  Kutb  Minar.  The  Arabic  inscrip- 
tion over  the  eastern  entrance  of  this  Court-yard  states  that 
the  materials  were  obtained  from  the  demolition  of  27  idola- 
trous temples,  each  of  which  had  cost  the  sum  of  20  lakhs  of 
I) 'dials.  I agree  with  Mr.  Thomasf  that  the  D ilia  l must 
have  corresponded  with  the  original  billon  currency  of 
Prithivi  Raja.  Now  the  value  of  the  Dilial  was  as  nearly  as 
possible  the  same  as  that  of  the  Jital  or  Chital  of  Ala-uddin 
Kliilji,  50  of  which,  as  we  learn  from  Perishta, * were  equal 
to  one  Rupee.  The  cost  of  each  of  these  temples  would  not, 
therefore,  have  been  more  than  Rs.  40,000,  and  that  of  the 
whole  number,  only  Rs.  10,80,000,  or  £108,000.  The  cost 
of  these  temples  seems  excessive  when  expressed  in  such 

* Katie  Vyds  Jagjoti  agamu  dgamu  hojdno, 
Tomar,  tai  Chahuivdn  tioi,  puni  puni  Tarkdno, 
f Prinsep’s  Essays,  I.,  326. 
t -Briggs,  I.,  360. 



small  money  as  Dilials,  each  coin  being  worth  only  a little 
more  than  a half-penny ; hut  the  sum  is  moderate  enough 
when  it  is  named  in  rupees. 

Mr.  Fergusson*  has  expressed  an  opinion  that  “ it  is  not 
“easy  to  determine  whether  the  pillars  now  stand  as  ori- 
“ ginally  arranged  by  the  Hindus,  or  whether  they  have  been 
“ taken  down  and  re-arranged  hv  the  conquerors.”  In  this 
instance  he  thinks  it  “ most  probable  that  the  former  was 
“ the  case,  and  that  they  were  open  colonnades  surrounding 
“ the  palace  of  Prithivi  Raja hut  he  presently  adds  that, 
“ if  this  is  so,  it  is  the  only  instance  known  of  Hindu  pillars 
“ being  left  undisturbed.”  When  Mr.  Fergusson  formed  this 
opinion,  he  was  not  aware  of  the  fact  recorded  over  the 
eastern  gateway  by  the  Musulman  conqueror,  that  the  Great 
Masjid  had  been  built  of  the  materials  of  no  less  than 
twenty-seven  Hindu  temples.  He  knew  only  the  common 
tradition  that  on  this  site  once  stood  the  palace  and  temple 
attributed  to  Prithivi  Raja.  On  this  account  he  may  have 
supposed  that  most  of  these  pillars  must  have  belonged  to 
those  buildings,  and,  therefore,  that  some  of  them  might  pos- 
sibly still  be  in  their  original  positions.  But  evidently  he 
had  strong  doubts  on  the  subject ; for  he  repeats  his  opinion 
that,  “ if  the  pillars  at  Kutb  are  in  situ,  it  is  the  only  instance 
“known  of  such  being  the  case.”  In  February  1853  I 
examined  very  minutely  the  pillared  cloisters  of  the  Great 
Mosque,  and  I then  came  to  the  conclusion,  as  recorded  in 
my  note-hook  at  the  time,  that  “ the  square  about  the  Iron 
“ Pillar  is  all  made  up ; the  outer-walls  are  not  Hindu ; the 
“ pillars  are  all  made  up  of  pieces  of  various  kinds ; the 
“ shaft  of  one  kind  being  placed  above  that  of  another  for 
“ the  purpose  of  obtaining  height.  The  general  effect  is  good ; 
“ but  a closer  inspection  reveals  the  incongruities  of  pillars, 
“ half  plain  and  half  decorated,  and  of  others  that  are  thicker 
“above  than  below.”  Just  ten  years  later,  in  January 
1863,  with  Mr.  Fergusson’s  hook  in  my  hand  I re-examined 
the  whole  of  these  pillars  with  exactly  the  same  result. 
Every  single  pillar  is  made  up  of  two  separate  Hindu  shafts, 
placed  one  above  the  other ; and  as  these  shafts  are  of  many 
various  sizes,  the  required  height  is  obtained  by  the  insertion 
of  other  pieces  between  the  shorter  shafts.!  In  one  instance 

* Hand-book  of  Architecture,  141S. 

+ I have  a suspicion  that  some  of  the  pillars  in  the  Masjid  itself  may  be  in  their 
original  positions.  They  are  single  pillars  of  a large  temple.  I will  examine  them  minutely 
during  the  ensuing  cold  season,  1871-72. 



in  the  north  cloister  there  is  a pillar  made  np  of  no  less  than 
three  shafts  of  exactly  the  same  pattern,  piled  one  over  the 
other.  This  may  be  seen  in  Beato’s  photograph  of  this  clois- 
ter (see  the  4tli  pillar  on  the  left  hand).  The  general  effect 
of  these  large  rows  of  made-up  columns  is  certainly  rich  and 
pleasing ; hut  this  effect  is  due  to  the  kindly  hand  of  time, 
which  has  almost  entirely  removed  the  coating  of  plaster 
with  which  the  whole  of  these  beautifully  sculptured  pillars 
were  once  barbarously  covered  by  the  idol-hating  Musalmans. 

The  same  doubling  np  of  the  old  Hindu  pillars  has  been 
followed  in  the  cloisters  of  the  outer  court  of  the  Kutb  Minar, 
the  shaft  of  one  plain  pillar  being  placed  over  another  to  obtain 
height.  A similar  re-arrangement  may  be  observed  in  the 
Court  of  the  Jdmai  or  Dina  Masjid  of  Kanoj,  commonly  called 
Sita-ka-Basui,  or  “ Sita’s  kitchen.” 

The  number  of  decorated  pillars  now  remaining  in  the 
court-yard  of  the  Great  Mosque  around  the  Iron  Pillar  is, 
as  nearly  as  I could  reckon  them,  340 ; but  as  the  cloisters 
are  incomplete,  the  original  number  must  have  been  much 
greater.  My  reckoning  makes  them  450.  In  the  interior 
of  the  Great  Mosque  itself  there  are  35  pillars  now  remain- 
ing, of  a much  larger  size  and  of  a somewhat  different  style 
of  decoration.  When  the  Mosque  was  complete  there  must 
have  been  not  less  than  76  of  these  pillars.  Of  the  plainer 
pillars  in  the  court-yard  of  the  Kutb  Minar  I counted  376, 
but  the  total  number  required  to  complete  the  cloisters  would 
be  about  1,200. 

I have  given  these  figures  in  detail  for  the  purpose  of 
corroborating  the  statement  of  the  Musalman  conqueror, 
with  regard  to  the  number  of  temples  that  were  standing  in 
Dilli  at  the  close  of  the  Hindu  power.  The  usual  number  of 
columns  in  a Hindu  temple  is  from  20  to  30,  although  a few 
of  the  larger  temples  may  have  from  50  to  60.  But  these 
are  exceptional  cases,  and  they  are  more  than  balanced  by 
the  greater  number  of  smaller  temples,  which  have  not  more 
than  12  or  16  pillars.  The  great  temple  of  Vishnupad  at 
Gaya  has  50  pillars,  and  Mr.  Pergusson  mentions  that  a 
temple  of  56  pillars  was  the  most  extended  arrangement  that 
he  had  met  with  under  a single  dome.*  The  magnificent 

* Illustrations  of  Indian  Architecture,  Introd.,  p.  18. 




temple  at  Chandr&vati,  near  Jlialra  Pcltan,  and  the  pillared 
temple  of  Ganthai,  at  Kajrdho,  have  only  28  columns  each. 
The  Baroli  temple  has  24  columns,  the  great  temple  at 
Bindrdbcin  has  only  16,  and  the  Chaori,  in  the  Mokandra 
Pass,  has  not  more  than  12.  But  there  are  many  temples 
that  have  even  fewer  pillars  than  these ; as,  for  instance,  that 
of  Mata  Devi,  in  Gwalior,  which  has  only  6 pillars,  and  that 
of  Chatur  Blmja,  also  in  Gwalior,  which  has  not  more  than 
4 pillars.  Taking  these  temples  as  fair  specimens  of  many 
various  styles  and  ages,  the  average  number  of  pillars  in  a 
Hindu  fane  is  between  24  and  25,  or,  if  the  extremes  be 
omitted,  the  average  number  is  21.  Accepting  these  num- 
bers as  a fair  guide,  we  may  set  down  the  76  pillars  of  the 
Great  Masjid  as  the  spoils  of  at  least  2,  but  more  probably 
of  3 temples,  each  equal  in  size  to  the  magnificent  fane  at 
Chandra vati.  Similarly  the  453  pillars  of  the  court  of  the 
Masjid  will  represent  the  spoils  of  not  less  than  from  18  to 
22  temples,  of  20  and  25  columns  each.  These  numbers 
added  together  give  a total  of  from  20  to  25  temples,  which 
agrees  so  nearly  with  the  number  recorded  in  the  Muham- 
madan inscription,  as  to  leave  no  doubt  whatever  of  the  truth 
of  the  conqueror’s  boast  that  the  Masjid  was  built  of  the 
spoils  of  27  temples. 

A curious  confirmation  of  the  average  size  of  those 
temples  has  been  afforded  by  a discovery  which  I first  made 
in  1853,  and  which  I completed  during  the  present  year  1863. 
In  the  south-east  corner  of  the  cloisters  of  the  Great  Mosque, 
the  pillars,  with  bases  and  capitals  complete,  are  nearly  all  of 
one  style  and  size,  and  quite  different  from  the  other  columns. 
Now,  the  bases,  shafts,  and  capitals  of  these  pillars  are  num- 
bered, the  highest  number  discovered  being  19.  I found  15 
numbered  shafts,  of  which  No.  13  is  in  the  north  cloister,  far 
away  from  its  fellows.  I found  also  13  numbered  bases,  and 
7 numbered  capitals  ; but  only  in  one  instance,  that  of  No.  10, 
do  the  numbers  of  base,  shaft,  and  capital,  as  they  now  stand, 
agree.  Here,  then,  we  have  a direct  and  convincing  proof  that 
these  particular  pillars  have  all  been  re-arranged.  The  total 
number  of  shafts  discovered  was  only  15,  but  they  were  all 
numbered.  Of  the  bases  I discovered  19,  of  which  4 were 
square,  and  15  had  the  angles  recessed  like  all  the  shafts. 
Of  the  capitals,  all  of  one  uniform  pattern,  I found  20,  of 
which  one  was  inscribed  with  the  No.  19.  From  all  these 


Plate  XiAVH. 

Anastatired  -1  the  Surveyor  General’s  Office,  Calcutta. 



facts  I conclude,  with  a probability  amounting  almost  to  cer- 
tainty, that  the  temple  from  which  these  pillars  were  obtained 
consisted  of  20  columns  only.  On  No.  12  shaft  there  is  the 
word  Kaclial  in  Nagari  letters  on  one  face,  with  the  date  of 
1121  on  another  face,  which,  referred  to  the  Yikramaditya 
Samvat,  is  equivalent  to  A.  D.  1067,  at  which  time 
Anang  Pal  II.,  the  founder  of  Lalkot,  was  reigning  in 

But  the  mason’s  marks  on  the  stones  of  this  temple 
were  not  confined  to  the  pillars,  as  I discovered  them  on  no 
less  than  13  different  portions  of  its  entablature.  These 
marks  are  more  than  usually  detailed ; but,  unfortunately,  in 
spite  of  their  length  and  apparent  clearness,  I am  still  unable 
to  make  them  out  completely.* 

The  marks  are  the  followin 

A.  — Chapa,  Vida  3 ... 

B.  — Chapa  Vida  4 

C.  — Puchuki  4 

D.  — Puchuki  5 pachhim  ... 

E.  — Vi  Chaothe 

F.  — Vi  panchama 

G.  — Prathama  Dashen 

H.  — Pachchhim  Raki  Dashen 

K.  — Purab  Prathama 

L.  — Purab  3 

M.  — Pachchhim  Ra  3 A-  (ge  ?) 

N.  — Pachchhim  Raki  pachchhe 

O.  — Pachchhim  Raki  6 pachchhe 

Upper  Vida  (?)  No.  3 

Ditto  (?)  No.  4 

Rear  (?)  No.  4 

Rear  (?)  No.  5 west. 

Vida  (?)  fourth. 

Vida  (?)  fifth. 

First  Architrave. 

West  side  Architrave. 

East  first. 

East  No.  3. 

West  side  No.  3.,  front? 
West  side  back. 

West  side  No.  6,  back. 

There  is  a peculiarity  about  the  numbers  of  the  pillars 
which  is  worthy  of  note.  Each  cypher  is  preceded  by  the 
initial  letter  of  the  word  for  that  number.  Thus,  3 is  preceded 
by  ti  for  tin,  10  by  da  for  das,  and  16  by  so  for  solah.  The 
same  style  of  marking  would  appear  to  have  been  used  for 
a second  temple,  as  I found  a pillar  of  another  pattern  with 
the  number  du  2,  and  a pilaster  of  the  same  kind  with 

* See  Plate  XXXVII.  for  copies  of  these  mason’s  marks,  and  a drawing  of  one  of  the 
pillars.  During  a visit  of  a few  hours  in  the  present  year,  1871,  I found  two  numbered  pillars 
of  a different  kind,  with  the  Nos.  2 and  19,  showing  that  a second  temple,  destroyed  by  the 
Muhammadans,  must  have  been  supported  on  not  less  than  20  pillars.  I found  also  a mason’s 
record  of  five  lines  on  a third  variety  of  pillar,  but  the  letters  are  faint  and  difficult  to  read. 
I can  make  out  a notice  of  7 + 6 + 5 + 8,  or  26  pillars  altogether,  of  which  1 discovered  6 
in  the  cloisters. 



i 19.*  Sixteen  bases  of  the  first  pillar  have  recessed 
angles,  and  four  are  plain  squares.  In  this  case  the  temple 
would  have  had  4 pillars  (probably  an  outer  row)  of  one 
pattern,  and  16  of  another  kind,  but  all  of  the  same  height. 

The  dimensions  of  these  inscribed  pillars  are  as  follows : 






( Upper  member,  with  brackets... 
( Lower  ditto 











f Upper  portion,  ornamented 



( Lower  ditto  plain 





Total  hei 


• • . 



The  only  other  Hindu  remains  are  the  two  forts  of 
Ldlkot  and  Bed  Pithora,  which  together  formed  the  old 
I)illi  of  the  Musalmans,  after  the  building  of  a new  fort 
of  Siri  by  Ala-ud-din  Khilji.  Of  these  two,  the  older  fort 
of  Ldlkot  has  hitherto  remained  unknown,  being  always 
described  by  Musalmans  as  a part  of  the  fort  of  Pithora. 
It  is  called  Siri  by  Lieutenant  Burgess,  who  made  a survey 
of  the  ruins  of  Dilli  in  1849-50,  and  the  same  name  is  given 
to  it  by  Messrs.  Cope  and  Lewis  in  their  interesting  account 
of  Piruzabad,  published  in  the  Journal  of  the  Archaeological 
Society  of  Delhi  for  1850.  The  reasons  which  induce  me 
to  identify  this  fort  with  the  Ldlkot  of  Anang  Pal  have 
already  been  given  when  speaking  of  the  re-founding  of  Dilli, 
and  the  reasons  which  compel  me  to  reject  its  identification 
with  Siri  will  be  detailed  when  I come  to  speak  of  that 

The  Fort  of  Ldlkot,  which  was  built  by  Anang  Pal  in 
A.  D.  1060,  is  of  an  irregular  rounded  oblong  form,  miles 
in  circumference.  Its  walls  are  as  lofty  and  as  massive  as 
those  of  Tughlakabad , although  the  blocks  of  stone  are  not 

* These  two  pillars  are  4 feet  101  inches  high,  and  Ilf  inches  square.  I found  13  pillars 
of  almost  the  same  pattern,  but  of  somewhat  large  dimensions,  being  5 feet  31  inches  high, 
and  13  j inches  square.  The  commonest  pillar  is  of  a similar  pattern,  but  with  the  addition 
of  human  figures  on  the  lower  faces  of  the  shaft,  and  a deep  recessed  ornament  at  the  top 
of  the  shaft.  Of  this  kind  I counted  78  pillars  during  my  last  visit  in  the  present  year 



so  colossal.  By  different  measurements  I found  the  ram- 
parts to  be  from  28  to  30  feet  in  thickness,  of  which  the 
parapet  is  just  one-half.  The  same  thickness  of  parapet  is  also 
derived  from  the  measurement  given  by  Ibn  Batuta  in  A.  D. 
1340,  who  says  that  the  walls  were  eleven  cubits  thick. 
Accepting  this  measure  as  the  same  that  was  in  use  in  Biruz 
Shah’s  time,  namely,  of  16  inches,  as  derived  from  the  length 
of  Biruz  Shah’s  pillar,  the  thickness  of  the  walls  of  old 
Dilli  was  14f  feet.  These  massive  ramparts  have  a general 
height  of  60  feet  above  the  bottom  of  the  ditch,  which  still 
exists  in  very  fair  order  all  round  the  fort,  except  on  the  south 
side,  wdiere  there  is  a deep  and  extensive  hollow  that  was 
most  probably  once  tilled  with  water.  About  one-half  of 
the  main  walls  are  still  standing  as  firm  and  as  solid  as  when 
they  were  first  built.  At  all  the  salient  points  there  are 
large  bastions  from  60  to  100  feet  in  diameter.  Two  of  the 
largest  of  these,  which  are  on  the  north  side,  are  called  the 
Fateh  Burj  and  the  Solum  Burj.  The  long  lines  of  wall 
between  these  bastions  are  broken  by  numbers  of  smaller 
towers  well  splayed  out  at  the  base,  and  45  feet  in  diameter 
at  top,  with  curtains  of  80  feet  between  them.  Along  the 
base  of  these  towers,  which  are  still  30  feet  in  height,  there 
is  an  outer  line  of  wall  forming  a raoni  or  faussebraie,  which 
is  also  30  feet  in  height.  The  parapet  of  this  wall  has  en- 
tirely disappeared,  and  the  wall  itself  is  so  much  broken,  as 
to  afford  an  easy  descent  into  the  ditch  in  many  places.  The 
upper  portion  of  the  counterscrap  walls  has  all  nearly  fallen 
down,  excepting  on  the  north-west  side,  where  there  is  a 
double  line  of  works  strengthened  by  detached  bastions. 

The  positions  of  three  of  the  gateways  in  the  west  half 
of  the  fort  are  easily  recognized,  but  the  walls  of  the 
eastern  half  are  so  much  broken  that  it  is  now  only  possible 
to  guess  at  the  probable  position  of  one  other  gate.  The 
north  gate  is  judiciously  placed  in  the  re-entering  angle 
close  to  the  Bateli  Burj,  where  it  still  forms  a deep  gap  in 
the  lofty  mass  of  rampart,  by  which  the  cowherds  enter 
with  their  cattle.  The  west  gate  is  the  only  one  of  which 
any  portion  of  the  walls  now  remains.  It  is  said  to  have 
been  called  the  Banjit  gate.  This  gate-way  was  17  feet  wide, 
and  there  is  still  standing  on  the  left  hand  side  a large  up- 
right stone,  with  a grove  for  guiding  the  assent  and  descent 
of  a portcullis.  This  stone  is  7 feet  in  height  above  the 



rubbish,  but  it  is  probably  not  less  than  12  or  15  feet. 
It  is  2 feet  1 inch  broad  and  1 foot  3 inches  thick.  The 
approach  to  this  gate  is  guarded  by  no  less  than  three  small 
out-works.  The  south  gate  is  in  the  southmost  angle  near 
Adham  Khan’s  tomb.  It  is  now  a mere  gap  in  the  mass  of 
rampart.  On  the  south-east  side  there  must,  I think,  have 
been  a gate  near  Sir  Thomas  Metcalfe’s  house,  leading 
towards  Tughlakabad  and  Mathura.* 

Syad  Ahmad  states,  on  the  authority  of  Zia  Bami,  that 
the  west  gate  of  Bui  Pithora’s  Port  was  called  the  Ghazni 
Gate  after  the  Musalman  conquest,  because  the  Ghazni  troops 
had  gained  the  fortress  by  that  entrance.  I feel  satisfied  that 
this  must  be  the  Han]  it  Gate  of  Lalkot  for  the  foil  owing 
reasons : 

1st. — The  Musalmans  never  make  any  mention  of  Lal- 
kot, but  always  include  it  as  a part  of  Rai  Pithora’s  Port. 

2nd. — The  possession  of  the  larger  and  weaker  fortress 
of  Rai  Pithora  could  not  be  called  the  conquest  of  Delhi, 
while  the  stronger  citadel  of  Lalkot  still  held  out. 

3rd. — The  evident  care  with  which  the  approach  to  the 
Ranjit  Gate  has  been  strengthened  by  a double  line  of  works, 
and  by  three  separate  out-works  immediately  in  front  of  the 
gateway  itself,  shows  that  this  must  have  been  considered  as 
the  weakest  point  of  the  fortress,  and  therefore  that  it  was 
the  most  likely  to  have  been  attacked.  Por  this  reason  I 
conclude  that  the  Ranjit  gate  was  the  one  by  which  the 
Musalmans  entered  Lalkot,  the  citadel  of  Dilli,  and  that, 
having  proved  its  weakness  by  their  own  success,  they  at 
once  proceeded  to  strengthen  the  works  at  this  point  for  their 
own  security.  A case  exactly  similar  occurred  less  than 
forty  years  afterwards,  when  the  Emperor  Altamsh,  having 
gained  an  entrance  into  the  fortress  of  Gwalior  by  the  deep 
ravine  on  the  west  side  called  Urwalii,  immediately  closed  it 
by  a massive  wall,  to  prevent  his  enemies  from  taking  advan- 
tage of  the  same  weak  point.  I believe  that  the  western 

* See  Plate  No.  XXXVI.  for  an  enlarged  plan  of  Lalkot,  showing  the  positions  of  the 
different  gates.  It  seems  probable  that  the  western  half  of  Lalkot  was  once  cut  off  from 
the  eastern  half,  as  there  are  traces  of  walls  and  ramparts  running  from  the  Sohan  Bftrj  on 
the  north  direct  south  towards  Adham  Khan’s  tomb.  I traced  these  walls  as  far  as  the 
ruined  building  to  the  west  of  Anang  Pal’s  tank.  The  western  portion  would  have  been 
the  citadel  of  Lalkot  under  Anang  Pal,  before  the  accession  of  Rai  Pithora.  My  Assistant, 
Mr.  J.  D.  Beglar,  has  discovered  a gateway  in  the  southern  half  of  this  wall,  between 
Adham  Khan’s  Tomb  and  the  Jog  Maya  temple. 



gate  was  called  tlie  Ghazni  Gate  for  the  simple  reason  only 
that  Ghazni  lies  to  the  west  of  Delhi. 

The  Fort  of  Rai  Pithora,  which  surrounds  the  citadel 
of  Lalkot  on  three  sides,  would  appear  to  have  been  built 
to  protect  the  Hindu  city  of  Dilli  from  the  attacks  of  the 
Musalmans.  As  early  as  A.  D.  1100,  the  descendants  of 
Mahmud,  retiring  from  Ghazni  before  the  rising  power  of  the 
Saljukis,  had  fixed  their  new  capital  at  Labor,  although 
Ghazni  still  belonged  to  their  kingdom,  and  was  occasionally 
the  seat  of  Government.  But  a new  and  more  formidable 
enemy  soon  appeared,  when  the  celebrated  Muaz-uddin  Sam, 
commonly  called  Muhammad  Ghori,  after  capturing  the  cities 
of  Multan  and  Parshawar,  appeared  before  Labor  in  A.  D. 
1180,  and  put  an  end  to  the  Ghaznavide  dynasty  by  the 
capture  of  their  capital  in  A.  D.  1186.  The  danger  was 
now  imminent,  and  only  a few  years  later  we  find  the 
Ghori  King  in  full  march  on  Ajmer.  But  the  Raja  of 
Dilli  was  well  prepared  for  this  invasion,  and,  with  the  aid 
of  his  allies,  he  defeated  the  Musalmans  with  great  slaughter 
at  Tilaori,  midway  between  Karnal  and  Thanesar.  As  the 
first  appearance  of  the  formidable  Ghoris  before  Labor 
corresponds  so  nearly  with  the  accession  of  Prithivi  Raja, 
I think  it  very  probable  that  the  fortification  of  the  city  of 
Dilli  was  forced  upon  theRaja  by  a well-grounded  apprehension 
that  Dilli  itself  might  soon  be  attacked ; and  so  it  happened, 
for  within  two  years  after  the  battle  of  Tilaori  the  Raja  was 
a prisoner,  and  Dilli  was  in  the  possession  of  the  Musalmans. 

The  circuit  of  Rai  Pithora’s  Port  is  4 miles  and  3 
furlongs,  or  just  three  times  as  much  as  that  of  Lalkot.  But 
the  defences  of  the  city  are  in  every  way  inferior  to  those 
of  the  citadel.  The  walls  are  only  half  the  height,  and  the 
towers  are  placed  at  much  longer  intervals.  The  wall  of  the 
city  is  carried  from  the  north  bastion  of  Lalkot,  called  Fateh 
Biirj,  to  the  north-east  for  three-quarters  of  a mile,  where 
it  turns  to  the  south-east  for  1-|  mile  to  the  Damdama  Burj. 
Prom  this  bastion  the  direction  of  the  wall  for  about  one  mile 
is  south-west,  and  then  north-west  for  a short  distance  to  the 
south  end  of  the  hill  on  which  Azim  Khan’s  tomb  is  situated. 
Beyond  this  point  the  wall  can  be  traced  for  some  distance 
to  the  north  along  the  ridge  which  was  most  probably 
connected  with  the  south-east  corner  of  Lalkot,  somewhere 
in  the  neighbourhood  of  Sir  T.  Metcalfe’s  house. 



The  Port  of  Rai  Pithora  or  Delhi  Proper  is  said  to  have 
had  nine  gates  besides  the  Ghazni  Gate,*  most  of  which  can 
still  be  traced.  Three  are  on  the  west  side,  of  which  two 
belong  to  the  citadel  of  Lalkot,  aid  the  third  has  a small  out- 
work. There  were  five  on  the  north  side,  towards  Jahanpanah, 
and  one  on  the  east  side,  towards  Tughlakabad,  which  must 
have  been  the  Badaon  Gate,  that  is  so  often  mentioned  in  early 
Muhammadan  history.  There  must  also  have  been  one  gate 
on  the  south  side,  which  would  have  been  close  to  Sir  T. 
Metcalfe’s  house.  Such  was  the  Hindu  City  of  Dilliwhen  it 
was  captured  by  the  Musalmans  in  January  1191.  The  circuit 
of  its  walls  was  nearly  4^  miles,  and  it  covered  a space  of 
ground  equal  to  one-lialf  of  the  modern  Shahjalianabad,  the 
Capital  of  the  Mogul  Sovereigns  of  India.  It  possessed  27 
Hindu  temples,  of  which  several  hundreds  of  richly  carved 
pillars  still  remain  to  attest  both  the  taste  and  the  wealth  of 
the  last  Hindu  Purlers  of  Dilli. 


The  first  Musalman  Sovereigns  of  Delhi  are  said  to  have 
remained  content  with  the  fortress  of  Rai  Pithora,  although 
it  seems  highly  probable  that  they  must  have  added  to  the 
defences  of  the  west  gate,  by  which  they  had  entered  Lalkot, 
the  citadel  of  the  Hindu  Kings.  But  though  the  first 
Musalman  Kings  did  not  build  huge  forts  or  extensive  cities 
to  perpetuate  their  names,  yet  in  the  Great  Mosque  and 
magnificent  column  of  Kutb-uddin  Aibeg,  as  well  as  in  the 
richly  carved  tomb  of  Altamsh,  they  have  left  behind  them 
a few  noble  works,  which  are  in  every  way  more  Worthy  of 
our  admiration. 

The  Great  Mosque  of  Kutb-uddin  was  called  the  Jama 
Masjid,  according  to  the  inscription  over  the  inner  archway 
of  the  east  entrance.  But  it  is  now  more  commonly  known 
as  the  Masjid-i-Kutb-ul  Islam,  or  the  “Mosque  of  the  Pole 
Star  of  Islamism,”  a name  which  appears  to  preserve  that  of 
its  founder.  It  seems  probable,  however,  that  the  Kutb 
Mosque,  as  well  as  the  Mindr,  may  have  been  named  after 
the  contemporary  Saint  Kutb-uddin  Ushi,  whose  tomb  is 
close  by.  Syad  Alimad  adds  that  the  Mosque  was  also  called 

* Malfuzat-i-Timuri,  or  Autobiography  of  Timur,  in  Dowson’s  edition  of  Sir  H.  M.  Elliot’s 
History — III.,  418. — So  also  Sharafuddin  in  the  Zafar  Naina,  in  Dowson’s  Elliot,  III.,  504. 



the  Adina  Masjid.  This  Great  Mosque,  which  even  in  ruin 
is  one  of  the  most  magnificent  works  in  the  world,  was  seen 
by  Ilm  Batuta*  about  150  years  after  its  erection,  when  he 
describes  it  as  having  no  equal,  either  for  beauty  or  extent. 
In  the  time  of  Timur,  the  people  of  old  Delhi  prepared  to 
defend  the  Great  Mosque,  but  they  were  all,  according  to  the 
Muhammadan  Historian  Sliaraf-uddin,  despatched  by  the 
sword  “ to  the  deepest  hell.”  The  Mosque  is  not  mentioned 
by  Baber,  although  he  notices  the  Minar  and  the  tomb  of 
Khwaja  Kutb-uddin,  which  he  perambulated. f It  is  not 
mentioned  either  by  Abul  Pazl ; but  no  inference  can  be 
drawn  from  his  silence,  as  he  does  not  even  allude  to  the 
Kutb  Minar.  The  Minar  itself  was  repaired  during  the 
reign  of  Sikandar  Lodi ; but  we  hear  nothing  of  the  Great 
Mosque,  from  which,  perhaps,  it  may  be  inferred  either  that 
it  was  still  in  good  order,  or  that  it  was  too  much  ruined  to 
be  easily  repaired.  I conclude  that  the  latter  wras  the  case, 
as  it  seems  probable  that  the  permanent  removal  of  the 
court  from  Delhi  to  Piruzabad  must  have  led  to  the  gradual 
abandonment  of  the  old  city.  We  have  a parallel  case  in  the 
removal  of  the  Hindu  court  from  Kanoj  to  the  Bari  in  the 
time  of  Mahmud  of  Ghazni.  This  removal  took  place  in 
A.  D.  1022  and  in  A.  D.  1031,  or  within  ten  years,  Abu 
Ptihan  records  that  Ivanoi  having  been  deserted  by  its  ruler, 
“ fell  to  ruin.” 

The  Great  Mosque  of  Kutb-uddin  was  begun  imme- 
diately after  the  capture  of  Delhi  in  A.  H.  587,  or  A.  D. 
1191,  as  recorded  by  the  King  himself  in  the  long  inscrip- 
tion over  the  inner  archway  of  the  east  entrance.  This  is 
the  reading  of  the  date  given  by  Syad  Ahmad,  and  Mr.  Thomas 
has  shown  good  grounds  for  its  being  the  true  date.  My  own 
reading  was  589,  taking  tisa  or  nine,  where  Syad  Ahmad 
reads  saba  or  seven,  but  the  two  words  are  so  much  alike  that 
they  may  be  read  differently  by  different  people.  Mr.  Thomas 
has  pointed  out  that  Ihn  Batuta  read  the  unit  as  arba  or  four. 
In  this  inscription,  as  well  as  in  the  shorter  one  over  the 
outer  archway  of  the  same  gate,  Kutb-uddin  refrains  from 
calling  himself  by  the  title  of  Sultan,  which  be  bestows  on 
his  Suzerain  Muaz-uddin  in  the  inscription  over  the  north 

* Travels,  p.  111. 
f Memoirs,  p.  308. 




gateway.  This  last  inscription  is  dated  in  A.  H.  59.2.  And 
here  I have  to  notice  the  omission  of  two  points  in  the  Syad’s 
copy  of  the  second  number  of  the  date.  In  my  copy,  which 
was  taken  in  1839,  I find  the  word  tisam,  or  “ ninety,”  quite 
complete.  This  inscription  records  that  the  foundation  of 
the  Masjid  was  laid  in  the  reign  of  the  Sultan  Mudz-uddin 
Muhammad , bin  Sam  (in  the  time  of  the  Khalif)  Naser, 
Chief  of  the  Faithful.  The  date  of  A.  H.  592,  or  A.  D.  1196, 
must,  therefore,  I think,  he  referred  to  the  completion  of  the 
building.  It  is  true  that  five  years  may  seem  but  a short 
time  for  the  erection  of  this  large  mosque,  yet,  when  we 
remember  that  the  whole  of  the  stones  were  obtained  ready 
squared  from  the  Hindu  temples  on  the  spot,  our  wonder  will 
cease,  and  any  doubts  that  might  have  arisen  in  our  minds 
will  be  dissipated  at  once. 

The  Jama  Masjid  is  not  so  large  as  many  buildings  of 
the  same  kind  that  have  been  raised  in  later  years,  such  as 
the  great  Mosques  of  Jonpur  and  others;  but  it  is  still 
unrivalled  for  its  grand  line  of  gigantic  arches,  and  for  the 
graceful  beauty  of  the  flowered  tracery  which  covers  its  walls. 
The  front  of  the  Masjid  is  a wall  8 feet  thick,  pierced  by  a line 
of  five  noble  arches.  The  centre  arch  is  22  feet  wide  and 
nearly  53  feet  in  height,  and  the  side  arches  are  10  feet  wide  and 
24  feet  high.  Through  these  gigantic  arches  the  first  Musal- 
mans  of  Delhi  entered  a magnificent  room,  135  feet  long 
and  31  feet  broad,  the  roof  of  which  was  supported  on  five  rows 
of  the  tallest  and  finest  of  the  Hindu  pillars.  The  Mosque  is 
approached  through  a cloistered  court,  145  feet  in  length 
from  east  to  west,  and  96  feet  in  width.  In  the  midst  of  the 
west  half  of  this  court,  stands  the  celebrated  Iron  Pillar,  sur- 
rounded by  cloisters  formed  of  several  rows  of  Hindu  columns 
of  infinite  variety  of  design,  and  of  most  delicate  execution. 
There  are  three  entrances  to  the  court  of  the  Masjid,  each  10  feet 
in  width,  of  which  the  eastern  entrance  was  the  principal  one. 
The  southern  entrance  has  disappeared  long  ago,  but  the 
other  two  are  still  in  good  order,  with  their  interesting 
inscriptions  in  large  Arabic  letters. 

I have  already  noticed  that  the  whole  of  the  beautiful 
Hindu  pillars  in  these  cloisters  were  originally  covered  with 
plaster  by  the  idol-hating  Musalmans  as  the  readiest  way  of 
removing  the  infidel  images  from  the  view  of  true  believers. 
A distinct  proof  of  this  may  be  seen  on  two  stones  in  the  north 


of  the 






m r 

TOM  ft 




added  \»y 

ALTAMSH  . A . D . !820 

ry  > i 


KUT  B-UL-18  LAM 
built  by 

' rf] 

0 □ x 

D D 
D D 
a d c 

0 D 

□ a 
a □ 
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0 D 

a a 
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added  \)y 

ALA-UD-DIN.  A.D.  1300 

/*r<*/<*  ''t'  Feet 

_1 I l t 

100  So 

A. . Cumiing'ham  cl  el . 


Litho.  at  the  Survr.  Geni’s.  Office.  Cah  October  1S71 



side  of  the  court,  one  fixed  in  the  inner  wall  in  the  north-east 
angle  just  above  the  pillars,  and  the  other  in  the  outer  wall 
between  the  north  gate  and  the  north-east  corner.  The  inner 
sculpture  represents  several  well  known  Hindu  gods, — 1st, 
Vislinu , lying  on  a couch  witli  a lotus  rising  from  his 
navel,  and  covered  by  a canopy,  with  two  attendants,  one 
standing  at  his  head  and  one  sitting  at  his  feet;  2nd,  a seated 
figure  not  recognized ; 3rd,  Indr  a,  on  his  elephant ; 4tli, 
Brahma , with  three  heads  seated  on  his  goose  ; 5th,  Siva,  with 
his  trident  seated  on  his  bull  Nandi ; 6th,  a figure  with  lotus 
seated  on  some  animal  not  recognized.  The  outer  sculpture  is 
of  a different  description.  The  scene  shows  two  rooms  with  a 
half-opened  door  between  them . In  each  room  there  is  a female 
lying  on  a couch  with  a child  by  her  side,  a canopy  over  her 
head,  and  an  attendant  at  her  feet.  In  the  left-hand  room  two 
females  are  seen  carrying  children  towards  the  door,  and  in 
the  risrht-hand  room  two  others  are  doinsr  the  same.  The 

O O 

whole  four  of  these  females  appear  to  be  hastening  towards 
the  principal  figure  in  the  right-hand  room.  I am  unable 
to  offer  any  explanation  of  this  very  curious  scene,  but  as  it 
is  very  unlikely  that  these  figures  would  have  been  exposed 
to  the  sight  of  the  early  Musalmans,  I conclude  that  these 
stones  must  also  have  been  carefully  plastered  over. 

During  the  reign  of  Altamsh,  the  son-in-law  of  Kutb- 
uddin,  the  Great  Mosque  was  much  enlarged  by  the  addition 
of  two  wings  to  the  north  and  south,  and  by  the  erection  of 
a new  cloistered  court  on  the  north,  east,  and  south  sides, 
so  as  to  include  the  Kutb  Minar  in  the  south-east  corner 
of  the  enclosure.  The  fronts  of  the  two  wing  buildings  are 
pierced  by  three  arches  each,  the  middle  arches  being  24  feet 
span,  and  the  side  arches  13  feet.  The  walls  are  of  the  same 
thickness,  and  their  ornamental  scrolls  are  of  the  same 
delicate  and  elaborate  tracery  as  those  of  the  original  Mosque.* 
The  whole  front  of  the  Jama  Masjid,  with  its  new  additions, 
is  384  feet  in  length,  which  is  also  the  length  of  its  cloistered 
court,  the  breadth  being  220  feet.  The  wall  on  the  south  side 
of  the  court,  as  well  as  the  south  end  of  the  east  wall,  are 
fortunately  in  good  preservation,  and,  as  about  three-fourths 
of  the  columns  are  still  standing,  we  are  able  to  measure  the 
size  of  the  enclosure  with  precision,  and  to  reckon  the  number 

* See  plate  No.  XXXVII.  for  a plan  of  the  original  Masjid  and  its  additions. 


of  columns  with  tolerable  certainty.  The  number  of  columns 
in  the  new  cloisters  must  have  been  as  nearly  as  possible 
300,  and  as  each  of  them  consists  of  two  Hindu  shafts,  the 
whole  number  of  Hindu  pillars  thus  brought  into  use  could 
not  have  been  less  than  600.  By  my  measurements  the 
new  court  is  362  feet  long  and  220  feet  broad,  inside  the 
the  walls,  of  which  the  west  wall,  which  is  the  front  of  the 
Masjid,  is  only  8 feet  thick,  the  other  walls  being  11  feet 
thick.  In  the  south-east  corner  of  this  great  quadrangle 
stands  the  majestic  column  called  Kutb  Minar,  within  11  feet 
of  the  line  of  cloister  pillars  on  the  south,  and  extending  into 
the  middle  of  the  cloister  on  the  east  side. 

At  a later  date  the  court  of  the  Great  Mosque  was  still 
further  enlarged  by  Alauddin  Khilji,  by  the  addition  of  a 
large  choistered  enclosure  on  the  east  side,  equal  in  size  to 
more  than  one-lialf  of  the  court  of  Altamsh.  This  work  is 
described  by  the  contemporary  poet  Amir  Kliusru,*  who  says 
that  the  “ Sultan  determined  upon  adding  to  and  completing 
the  Masjid-i-Jami  of  Shams-uddin  by  building  beyond  the 
three  old  gates  and  courts  a fourth  with  lofty  pillars,  and 
upon  the  surface  of  the  stones  he  engraved  verses  of  the 
Kuran  in  such  a manner  as  could  not  be  done  even  on  wax ; 
ascending  so  high  that  you  would  think  the  Kuran  was  going 
to  heaven,  and  again  descending  in  another  line  so  low  that 
you  would  think  it  was  coming  down  from  heaven.  * * * 

He  also  repaired  the  old  Masjids,  of  which  the  walls  were 
broken  or  inclining,  or  of  which  the  roof  and  domes  had 
fallen.”  I have  given  this  important  passage  at  some  length, 
as  its  purport  does  not  seem  to  he  quite  clear.  Mr.  Thomas 
understands  it  to  affirm  that  the  long  line  of  noble  arches  of 
the  great  Masjid  itself  were  built  by  Alauddin,!  and  certainly 
the  description  of  the  engraved  lines  of  the  Kuran  ascending 
and  descending  is  more  applicable  to  these  arches  than  to  any 
other  portion  of  the  Great  Kuth  hnildiiigs.  I think,  however, 
that  Amir  Khusru  must  refer  to  the  engraved  lines  of  Taglira 
on  the  Alai  Darwdza,  which  ascend  and  descend  in  the  same 
way  as  those  on  the  great  arches  of  the  Mosque.  It  may  ho 
argued  that  the  inscriptions  may  have  been  added  by  Alaud- 
din to  the  arches  built  by  his  predecessors  Aibeg  and  Altamsh. 

* Sir  H.  M.  Elliot’s  Muhammadan  nistorians,  by  Dowson,  III.,  CD. 
f Chronicles  of  the  Pathan  Kings  of  Delhi,  p.  156. 



I confess,  however,  that  my  own  opinion  is  strongly  in  favour 
of  the  contemporaneous  engraving  of  the  inscriptions,  and  of 
the  erection  of  the  long  line  of  noble  arches  by  the  earlier 
Kings  Aibeg  and  Altamsh.  I rest  my  opinion  not  only  on 
the  positive  statement  of  Hasan  Nizami,  a contemporary  of 
Aibeg,  who  records  that  Kuth-uddin  “ built  the  Jami  Masjid 
at  Delhi,”  and  covered  it  with  “ inscriptions  in  Tughra  con- 
taining the  divine  commands,”*  but  also  on  the  shape  and 
construction  of  the  arches,  and  the  form  of  the  letters, 
both  of  which  correspond  with  those  of  the  Altamsh  Masjid 
at  Ajmer,  while  they  differ  entirely  from  those  of  the  Alai 
Darwaza  and  Kliizri  Masjid  of  the  time  of  Alauddin.  I note 
first  that  the  four  remaining  arches  of  Kutb-uddin’s  Mosque 
are  ogee  in  shape  like  those  of  the  Great  Mosque  at  Ajmer, 
and  quite  different  from  the  pointed  and  horse-shoe  arches 
of  Alauddin.  I note  nest  that  the  upright  letters  of  the 
Kutb  Masjid  are  very  nearly  of  uniform  thickness,  thus 
agreeing  with  those  of  the  dated  inscriptions  on  the  gateways, 
while  those  of  Alauddin’s  time  are  invariably  much  broader 
at  top  than  at  bottom.  Lastly,  I note  that  the  undulated 
flower  stem,  which  forms  the  ornament  of  the  main  line  of 
inscription  on  the  central  arch  of  the  Mosque,  is  exactly  the 
same  as  that  of  the  inscription  on  the  north  gate  vrliich  is 
dated  in  A.  H.  594. f 

During  the  present  century,  much  speculation  has  been 
wasted  as  to  the  origin  of  the  Kutb  Minar,  whether  it  is  a 
purely  Muhammadan  building,  or  a Hindu  building  altered 
and  completed  by  the  conquerors.  The  latter  is  undoutedly 
the  common  belief  of  the  people,  wdio  say  that  the  pillar  wras 
built  by  Kai  Pitliora  for  the  purpose  of  giving  his  daughter 
a view  of  the  Diver  Jumna.  Some  people  even  say  that  the 
intention  was  to  obtain  a view  of  the  Ganges,  and  that  the  Kutb 
Minar  having  failed  to  secure  this  a second  pillar  of  double 
the  size  was  commenced,  but  the  work  was  interrupted  by  the 
conquest  of  the  Musalmans.  The  first  part  of  this  tradition 
was  warmly  adopted  by  Sir  T.  Metclafe,  and  it  has  since  found 
a strong  advocate  in  Syad  Ahmad,  whose  remarks  are  quoted 
with  approval  by  Mr.  Cooper  in  his  recent  hand-book  for 

# Sir  H.  M.  Elliot’s  Historians,  by  Dowson,  II.,  p.  222. 

+ Compare  tlris  elated  inscription  No.  7,  plate  XIII.  of  the  Asar  us  Sunnadid,  with 
any  large  photograph  of  the  Kutb  arches. 



Delhi.  Svad  Ahmad,  however,  refers  only  the  basement 
storey  to  Bai  Pithora;  but  this  admission  involves  the  whole 
design  of  the  column,  which  preserves  the  same  marked  cha- 
racter throughout  all  the  different  storeys.  The  Hindu 
theory  has  found  a stout  ojiponent  in  Colonel  Sleeman,  who 
argues  that  the  great  slope  of  the  building  “ is  the  peculiar 
characteristic  of  all  architecture  of  the  Pathans,”  and  that 
the  arches  of  the  Great  Mosque  close  by  it  “ all  correspond 
in  design,  proportion,  and  execution  to  the  tower.”* 

Mr.  Cooper  f recapitulates  Svad  Ahmad’s  arguments, 
and  finally  states  as  his  opinion  that  it  “ remains  an  open 
question  whether  this  magnificent  pillar  was  commenced  by 
the  Hindus  or  Muhammadans.”  1 must  confess,  however, 
that  I am  myself  quite  satisfied  that  the  building  is  entirely  a 
Muhammadan  one,  both  as  to  origin  and  to  design ; although, 
no  doubt,  many,  perhaps  all,  of  the  beautiful  details  of 
the  richly  decorated  balconies  may  be  Hindu.  To  me  these 
decorations  seem  to  be  purely  Hindu,  and  just  such  as  may 
be  seen  in  the  honey-comb  enrichments  of  the  domes  of  most 
of  the  old  Hindu  temples.  The  arguments  brought  forward 
in  support  of  the  Hindu  origin  of  the  column  are  the 
following  : 

1st. — “ That  there  is  only  one  Ulnar,  which  is  contrary 
to  the  practice  of  the  Muhammadans,  who  always  give  two 
Minars  to  their  Masjids.”  I allow  that  this  has  been  the 
practice  of  the  Muhammadans  for  the  last  three  hundred 
years  at  least,  and  I will  even  admit  that  the  little  corner 
turrets  or  pinnacles  of  the  Kdla,  or  Kalan , Masjid  of  Piruz 
Shah,  may  be  looked  upon  as  Minars.  This  would  extend 
the  period  of  the  use  of  two  Minars  to  the  middle  of  the 
14  th  century;  but  it  must  be  remembered  that  these  little 
turrets  of  Piruz  Shah’s  Masjid  are  not  what  the  Musalmans 
call  Mazinahs,  or  lofty  towers,  from  the  top  of  which  the 
Muazzin  calls  the  faithful  to  prayer.  But  the  Ivutb  Minar 
is  a Mazinah ; and  that  it  was  the  practice  of  the  early 
Muhammadans  to  build  a single  tower,  we  have  the  most 
distinct  and  satisfactory  proofs  in  the  two  Minars  of  Ghazni, 
which  could  not  have  belonged  to  one  Masjid,  as  they  are 
half  a mile  apart,  and  of  different  sizes.  These  Minars  were 

* Rambles  of  an  Indian  Official,  II.,  254. 
f Hand-book  for  Delhi,  p.  73. 



built  by  Mahmud  in  the  early  part  of  the  lltk  century,  or 
about  180  years  prior  to  the  erection  of  the  Kutb  Minar. 
Another  equally  decisive  proof  of  this  practice  is  the  solitary 
Minar  at  Koel,  which  was  built  in  A.  H.  652,  or  A.  D.  1251, 
by  Kutlugli  Khan , during  the  reign  of  Nasir-uddin  Mahmud, 
the  youngest  son  of  Altamsh,  in  whose  time  the  Kutb  Minar 
itself  was  completed.  These  still  existing  Minars  of  Ghazni 
and  Koel  show  that  it  was  the  practice  of  the  early  Muham- 
madans to  have  only  one  Minar  even  down  to  so  late  a date 
as  the  middle  of  the  13th  century. 

2nd. — It  is  objected  that  the  slope  of  the  Kutb  Minar 
is  much  greater  than  that  of  any  other  known  Minars.  This 
objection  has  already  been  satisfactorily  answered  by  Colonel 
Sleeman,  who  says  truely  that  “ the  slope  is  the  peculiar  cha- 
racteristic of  the  architecture  of  the  Pathans.” 

3rd. — Syad  Ahmad  argues  that,  if  the  Minar  had  been 
intended  as  a Mdzinah  to  the  Great  Mosque,  it  would  have 
been  erected  at  one  end  of  it,  instead  of  being  at  some  distance 
from  it.  In  reply  to  this  objection  I can  point  again  to  the 
Koel  Minar,  which  occupies  exactly  the  same  detached  posi- 
tion with  regard  to  the  Jama  Masjid  of  Koel  as  the  Kutb 
Minar  does  with  respect  to  the  Great  Mosque  of  Delhi.  Both 
of  them  are  placed  outside  the  south-east  corner  of  their  res- 
pective Masjids.  This  coincidence  of  position  seems  to  me 
sufficient  to  settle  the  question  in  favor  of  the  Kutb  Minar 
having  been  intended  as  a Mazinah  of  the  Great  Mosque. 

4 th.- — Syad  Ahmad  further  argues  “ that  the  entrance 
door  faces  the  north,  as  the  Hindus  always  have  it,”  whereas 
the  Muhammadans  invariably  place  it  to  the  eastward,  as  may 
be  seen  in  the  unfinished  “ Minar  of  Alauddin  to  the  north 
of  the  Kutb  Minar.”  Once  more  I appeal  to  the  Koel 
Minar,  which,  be  it  remembered,  was  erected  by  the  son  of 
the  Emperor  who  completed  the  building  of  the  Kutb  Minar, 
and  which  may,  therefore,  be  looked  upon  as  an  almost  con- 
temporary work.  In  the  Koel  Minar  the  entrance  door  is  to 
the  north,  exactly  as  in  the  Kutb  Minar.  In  both  instances, 
I believe  that  it  was  so  placed  chiefly  for  the  convenience  of 
the  Muazzin  when  going  to  call  the  faithful  to  prayer.  It 
think,  also,  that  Syad  Ahmad  has  overlooked  the  fact  that  the 
Minars  of  modern  days  are  “ engaged”  towers,  that  is,  they 
form  the  ends  of  the  front  wall  of  the  Mosque,  and,  as  the 



back  wall  of  every  Mosque  is  to  tlie  westward,  tlie  entrances 
to  the  “ engaged”  Minars  must  necessarily  he  to  the  eastward. 
But  the  case  is  entirely  different  with  a solitary  disengaged 
Minar,  of  which  the  entrance  would  naturally  be  on  the  side 
nearest  to  its  Masjid.  But  waiving  this  part  of  the  discus- 
sion, I return  to  the  fact  that  the  entrance  of  the  Koel  Minar 
is  to  the  northward,  exactly  the  same  as  in  the  Kutb  Minar, 
and  that  the  entrances  to  the  two  great  tombs  of  Balidwal 
HaJc,  and  RuJcn-nddin  in  Multan  are  not  to  the  eastward  but 
to  the  southward,  as  are  also  those  of  the  Taj  Mahal,  and  of 
most  other  modem  tombs.  The  only  exception  that  I know  is 
the  tomb  of  Altamsh,  of  which  the  entrance  is  to  the  east- 
ward. The  argument  of  Syad  xllimad  includes  also  the  posi- 
tion of  the  entrance  doors  of  Hindu  buildings,  which,  as  lie 
says,  are  always  placed  to  the  northward.  But  this  is  an 
undoubted  mistake,  as  a very  great  majority  of  Hindu 
temples  have  their  entrances  to  the  eastward.  On  referring 
to  my  Note  books,  I find  that,  out  of  50  temples,  of  which 
I have  a record,  no  less  than  38  have  their  entrances  to  the 
east,  10  to  the  west,  and  only  2 to  the  north,  both  of  which 
last  are  in  the  Port  of  Gwalior. 

Mil. — Syad  Ahmad  further  objects  that  “it  is  customary 
for  the  Hindus  to  commence  such  buildings  without  any 
platform  (or  plinth),  whereas  the  Muhammadans  always  erect 
their  buildings  upon  a raised  terrace  or  platform,  as  may  be 
seen  in  the  unfinished  Minar  of  Alauddin  Khilji.”  In  this 
statement  about  the  Hindu  buildings,  Syad  Ahmad  is  again 
mistaken,  as  it  is  most  undoubtedly  the  usual  custom  of  the 
Hindus  to  raise  their  temples  on  plinths.  I can  point  to  the 
gigantic  Buddhist  temple  at  Buddha  Gaya  as  springing  from 
a plinth  nearly  20  feet  in  height.  The  two  largest  temples 
in  the  Port  of  Gwalior,  one  Bralimanical  and  the  other  Jain, 
are  both  raised  on  plinths,  so  also  are  the  elaborately  sculp- 
tured temples  of  Kajraha,  and  so  are  most  of  the  temples  in 
in  Kashmir.  Lastly,  the  Great  Pillar  at  Cliitor  has  a plinth 
not  less  than  8 or  10  feet  in  height,  as  may  be  seen  in 
Pergusson’s  and  Tod’s  Drawings,  and  which  Tod*  describes 
as  “ an  ample  terrace  42  feet  square.”  The  smaller  pillar  at 
Chitor  must  also  have  a good  plinth,  as  Pcrgusson  describes 
the  entrance  as  at  some  height  above  the  base.  That  the 

* Rajasthan,  II.,  7G1. 



Muhammadans  in  India  also  erect  their  buildings  on  plinths 
or  raised  terraces,  I readily  admit ; for,  on  the  same  principle 
that  a Cuckoo  may  he  said  to  build  a nest,  the  Musalmans 
usually  placed  their  buildings  on  the  sites  of  Hindu  temples 
which  they  had  previously  destroyed.  The  Mosques  at  Ma- 
thura, Kanoj,  and  Jonpur,  are  signal  examples  of  this  practice. 
The  raised  terrace  is,  therefore,  only  an  accidental  adjunct  of 
the  Muhammadan  building,  whereas  it  is  a fundamental  part 
of  the  Hindu  structure.  But  the  early  Musalmans  did  not 
place  their  buildings  on  raised  terraces  or  platforms,  as  may 
be  seen  by  a reference  to  the  Drawings  of  Mosques  in  Syria 
and  Persia,  which  are  given  in  Pergusson’s  Hand-book.*  The 
Ghaznivides  also,  who  were  the  more  immediate  predecessors 
of  the  Indian  Musalmans,  built  their  Minars  at  Ghazni  with- 
out plinths.  The  contemporary  tomb  of  Altamsh  is  likewise 
without  a plinth.  Prom  all  these  facts  I infer  that  the  early 
Musalman  structures  in  India  were  usually  built  without 
plinths,  and  therefore  that  the  Kutb  Minar  is  undoubtedly  a 
Muhammadan  building. 

5 tli. — The  last  argument  brought  forward  by  Syad 
Ahmad  is,  that  bells,  which  are  used  in  Hindu  worship,  arc 
found  sculptured  on  the  lower  part  of  the  basement  storey  of 
the  Kutb  Minar.  It  is  true  that  bells  are  used  in  the  daily 
worship  of  the  Hindus,  and  also  that  they  are  a common 
ornament  of  Hindu  columns,  as  may  be  seen  on  most  of  the 
pillars  in  the  cloisters  of  the  Great  Mosque.  But  bells  are 
no  more  idolatrous  than  flowers,  which  are  used  in  such  pro- 
fusion in  the  daily  service  of  the  Hindu  temples.  The  fact 
is  that,  where  Muhammadan  mosques  have  been  built  of  the 
materials  stolen  from  Hindu  temples,  such  portions  of  archi- 
tectural ornament  as  were  free  from  figures  either  of  men  or 
of  animals,  were  invariably  made  use  of  by  the  conquerors. 
Por  this  reason  most  of  the  ornamentation  of  the  early 
Musalman  buildings  is  purely  Hindu.  Por  instance,  in  the 
Jama  Masjid  of  Kanoj,  which  is  built  entirely  of  Hindu  ma- 
terials, the  whole  of  the  concentric  circles  of  overlapping 
stones  in  the  central  dome,  with  only  one  exception,  still 
preserve  the  original  Hindu  ornament  unaltered.  The  ex- 
ception is  the  lowest  circle,  which  is  completely  covered  with 
Arabic  inscriptions.  One  of  the  Hindu  circles  is  made  up 
solely  of  the  Swasti/ca  or  mystic  cross  of  the  early  Indians. 
This  symbol  is  essentially  an  idolatrous  one,  although  it  is 

A 2 

* Vol.  I.,  p.  415. 



most  probable  that  tlie  Musalmans  were  not  aware  of  its 
significance.  But  if  the  ornamental  bells  of  the  Kutb  Minar 
are  to  be  taken  as  a proof  of  its  Hindu  origin,  even  so  must 
tlie  ornamental  Swastikas  of  the  Kanoj  Masjid  be  accepted 
as  evidence  to  the  same  effect.  It  is  admitted  that  this  Masjid 
is  built  up  entirely  of  Hindu  materials,  but  these  have  been 
skilfully  re-arranged  by  the  Moslem  Architect  to  suit  the 
requirements  of  a mosque,  so  that  the  design  of  the  building 
is  strictly  Muhammadan,  while  its  ornamentation  is  purely 
Hindu.  I may  add  that  one  of  the  western  pillars  that 
supports  the  central  dome  of  this  mosque  is  made  up  of  two 
old  shafts,  both  of  which  are  decorated  with  tlie  Hindu  bell 
and  suspending  chain. 

The  strong  evidence  which  I have  brought  forward  in 
reply  to  the  arguments  of  Syad  Ahmad  and  others,  appears 
to  me  to  be  quite  conclusive  as  to  the  origin  of  the  Kutb 
Minar,  which  is  essentially  a Muhammadan  building.  But 
the  strongest  evidence  in  favor  of  this  conclusion  is  the  fact 
that  the  Musalmans  of  Ghazni  had  already  built  two  separate 
Minars  of  similar  design  with  angular  flutes,  whereas  the 
only  Hindu  pillar  of  an  early  date,  namely,  the  smaller 
column  at  Chitor,  is  altogether  dissimilar,  both  in  plan  and 
in  detail.  The  entrance  to  this  Hindu  tower  is  at  some 
height  above  the  ground,  while  that  of  the  Kutb  Minar  is 
absolutely  on  the  ground  level.  The  summit  of  the  Hindu 
tower  is  crowned  by  an  open  pillared  temple  of  almost  the 
same  width  as  the  base  of  the  building,  whereas  the  cupola 
of  the  Kutb  Minar  is  little  more  than  • one-sixtli  of  the 
diameter  of  its  base.  But  this  small  cupola  of  less  than 
9 feet  in  diameter  was  peculiarly  adapted  for  one  special 
purpose  connected  with  the  performance  of  the  Muhammadan 
religion.  Brom  this  narrow  point  the  Muazzin  could  sum- 
mon the  faithful  to  prayer  from  all  sides  by  simply  turning 
round  and  repeating  the  Izan,  and  on  all  sides  lie  would 
be  visible  to  the  people.  The  small  size  of  the  cupola, 
which  crowns  the  Kutb  Minar,  is  a characteristic  peculiar 
to  Muhammadan  towers  for  the  special  reason  which  I 
have  just  mentioned.  On  this  account,  therefore,  I con- 
clude that  the  Kutb  Minar  is  a Muzinah  or  Muazzin’s 

That  the  Kutb  Minar  was  actually  used  as  a Mdzinali> 
we  may  infer  from  the  records  of  Shamsi  Siraj,  who  about 
A.  D.  1380,  records  that  the  magnificent  Minar  in  the  Jama 
Masjid  of  old  Delhi  was  built  by  Sultan  Shams-uddin  'f 



Altamsh.  But  the  fact  is  placed  beyond  all  doubt  by  Abulfeda, 
who  wrote  about  A.  D.  1300.  lie  describes  the  Mazinah  of 
the  Jama  Masjid  at  Delhi  as  made  of  red  stone  and  very  lofty, 
with  many  sides  and  360  steps.  Now  this  description  can 
be  applied  only  to  the  Kutb  Minar,  which,  as  it  at  present 
stands,  has  actually  379  steps ; but  we  know  that  the  Minar 
was  struck  by  lightning  in  the  reign  of  Eiruz  Shah,  by  whose 
orders  it  was  repaired  in  A.  D.  136S.  There  is,  therefore, 
nothing  improbable  in  the  account  of  Abulfeda  that  the 
Minar  in  his  time  had  only  360  steps.  On  the  contrary  I 
accept  the  statement  as  a valuable  hint  towards  ascertain- 
ing the  height  of  the  original  Minar  as  completed  by  the 
Emperor  Altamsh.* 

The  object  of  building  this  lofty  column  seems  to  me  to 
be  clear  enough.  The  first  Musalman  conquerors  were  an 
energetic  race,  whose  conceptions  were  as  bold  and  daring  as 
their  actions.  When  the  zealous  Muhammadan  looked  on 
the  great  city  of  Delhi,  the  metropolis  of  the  princely  Tomars 
and  the  haughty  Chohans,  his  first  wish  would  have  been 
to  humble  the  pride  of  the  infidel ; his  second,  to  exalt  the 
religion  of  his  prophet  Muhammad.  To  attain  both  of  these 
objects,  he  built  a lofty  column,  from  whose  summit  the 
Muazziris  call  to  morning  and  evening  prayer  could  be  heard 
on  all  sides  by  Hindus  as  well  as  by  Musalmans.  The  con- 
queror’s pride  was  soothed  by  the  daily  insult  and  indignity 
thus  offered  to  the  infidel,  while  his  religious  feelings  were 
gratified  by  the  erection  of  a noble  monument  which  towered 
majestically  over  the  loftiest  houses  in  the  city. 

The'  Kutb  Minar,  as  it  stands  now,  is  238  feet  and  1 inch 
in  height,  with  a base  diameter  of  47  feet  3 inches,  and  an 
upper  diameter  of  nearly  9 feet.  The  base  or  plinth  of  the 
pillar  is  2 feet  in  height,  the  shaft  is  234  feet  and  1 inch,  and 
the  base  or  stump  of  the  old  cupola  is  2 feet  more ; thus  mak- 
ing the  whole  height  238  feet  1 inch.  The  shaft  is  divided 
into  five  storeys,  of  which  the  lower  storey  is  94  feet  11  inches 
in  height,  and  the  upper  storey  is  22  feet  4 inches,  the  two 

* See  Gildemeister  Scriptorum  Arabum  de  rebus  Iudieis.  He  describes  it  as  built 
of  red  stone. 

Of  the  379  steps  3 belong  to  Major  Smith’s  cupola,  and  37  to  the  upper  storey  of 
22  feet  4 inches,  which  leave  339  steps  to  the  four  lower  storeys.  In  the  time  of  Abulfeda, 
there  must  consequently  have  been  21  steps  above  the  fourth  storey  to  make  up  his  total  of 
360  steps.  These  would  be  equal  to  13  feet  in  height,  making  the  total  height  in  his  time 
228  feet  9 inches,  or  9 feet  4 inches  less  than  at  present.  This  agrees  with  the  statement 
of  Firuz  Shah,  who  says — “The  Min&ra  of  Sultan  Muiz-udclin  Sam  had  been  struck  by 
lightning,  I repaired  it,  and  raised  it  lii</kcr  than  it  was  before. — See  Dowson’s  edition  of 
Sir  H.  M.  Elliot’s  Historians,  III.,  3S3.  Futuhat-i-Firuz  Shdlii. 



measurements  together  being  just  equal  to  one-half  of  the 
height  of  the  column.  The  height  of  the  second  storey  is 
50  feet  inches,  that  of  the  third  storey  is  40  feet  9|  inches, 
and  that  of  the  fourth  storey  is  25  feet  4 inches,  or  just  one- 
half  of  the  height  of  the  second  storey.  There  are  two 
other  proportions  which  may  be  noticed,  as  they  most  pro- 
bably entered  into  the  original  design  of  the  building.  The 
column,  as  it  stands  now,  omitting  only  the  stump  of  the  old 
cupola,  is  just  five  diameters  in  height;  thus,  47  feet  3 inches, 
multiplied  by  5,  gives  236  feet  3 inches  as  the  height  of  the 
column,  which  is  only  2 inches  in  excess  of  the  mean  measure- 
ment. Again,  the  lower  storey  is  j ust  two  diameters  in  height. 
Both  of  these  proportions  were,  I presume,  intentional.  But 
there  is  another  coincidence  of  measurements,  which  is,  I think, 
too  curious  to  have  been  intentional,  namely,  that  the  circum- 
ference of  the  base  is  equal  to  the  sum  of  the  diameters 
of  the  six  storeys  of  the  building,  the  old  cupola  being 
considered  as  a sixth  storey.* 

As  some  of  the  dimensions  here  given  differ  from 
those  recorded  by  Ensign  Blunt  in  the  Asiatic  Researches,  it 
is  necessary  that  I should  state  that  they  are  the  mean 
results  of  two  sets  of  measurements,  the  first  taken  by 
myself  in  1839,  and  the  other  by  Sir  Erederick  Abbott 
in  1S46.  I now  give  these  measurements  in  detail  for 
comparison  : 

A.  D.  1839. 

A.  D.  1840. 



Ft.  In. 



Ft.  In. 

Ft.  In. 

Upper  storey 

...  21  10 



22  4 

G2  6 

4th  „ 

...  25  4 



25  4 

' 23  0 

3rd  „ 

...  40  9 



40  H 

40  0 

2nd  ,, 

...  50  10 




50  0 

Basement  „ 

...  95  3 



94  11 

90  0 

234  0 



234  1 


2 0 



2 0 

23G  0 



236  1 

Stump  of  old  cupola 

2 0 



2 0 

Total  present  height 







238  1 

242  6 

* H the  fifth  storey  of  the  original  pillar  bore  the  same  proportion  to  the  third  storey 
of  eight-nineteenths  which  the  latter  bears  to  the  first  storey,  then  its  height  would  have 
been  nearly  17  feet,  instead  of  13  feet,  as  mentioned  in  the  previous  note.  But  as  the  height 
of  the  steps  in  each  of  the  four  lower  storeys  averages  from  7|  to  7 i‘  inches,  it  is  most  pro- 
bable that  they  were  of  the  same  dimensions  in  the  fifth  storey  as  they  are  now,  or  some- 
what over  7 inches. 



The  only  way  in  which  I can  account  for  the  great 
difference  of  5 feet  in  the  height  of  the  lower  storey  between 
Blunt’s  measurements  taken  in  1794  and  the  actual  height 
as  it  now  stands,  is  by  supposing  that  there  must  have  been 
an  accumulation  of  rubbish  at  the  foot  of  the  tower  which 
would  have  diminished  the  actual  height  of  the  basement 
storey.  His  heights  of  the  second  and  third  storeys  agree 
very  closely  with  my  measurements,  but  that  of  the  fourth 
storey  is  more  than  2 feet  short  of  the  true  height.  The 
height  of  the  fifth  storey  is  not  given. 

In  recording  Blunt’s  measurements  Mr.  Eergusson  has, 
I think,  made  a mistake  in  excluding  the  cupola  from  the 
ascertained  height  of  242  feet  G inches.  Blunt  distinctly 
states  that  the  height  of  the  third  storey  was  180  feet,  which, 
deducted  from  242^-,  will  give  no  less  than  62^  feet  for  the 
height  of  the  two  upper  storeys.  But  this  height,  as  we  know 
from  present  measurements,  is  only  25  feet  4 inches,  plus  22 
feet  4 inches,  or  altogether  47  feet  8 inches,  which,  deducted 
from  62^  feet,  leaves  14  feet  10  inches  unaccounted  for.  I 
conclude,  therefore,  that  this  must  have  been  the  height  of 
the  cupola  as  it  stood  in  A.  D.  1794.  Accepting  this  view  as 
correct,  the  true  height  of  the  Kutb  Minar  in  1794  must  have 
been  236  feet  1 inch,  plus  14  feet  10  inches,  or  250  feet  11 

The  base  or  plinth  of  the  Kutb  Minar  is  a polygon  of 
24  sides,  each  side  measuring  G feet  1-|  inches,  or  altogether 
147  feet.  The  basement  storey  has  the  same  number  of  faces 
formed  into  convex  flutes,  which  are  alternately  angular  and 
semi-circular.  This  last  fact  alone  is  sufficient  to  show  the 
inaccuracy  of  Blunt’s  description  of  the  plan  as  a polygon  of 
27  sides,*  as  any  uneven  number  of  faces  would  have  brought 
two  flutes  of  the  same  kind  together.  In  the  second  storey 
the  flutes  are  all  semi-circular,  and  in  the  third  storey  they 
are  all  angular.  The  fourth  storey  is  circular  and  plain,  and 
the  fifth  storey  is  partially  fluted  with  convex  semi-circular 
flutes.  Bound  the  top  of  each  storey  runs  a bold  projecting 
balcony,  which  is  richly  and  elaborately  decorated.  The  three 
lower  storeys  are  also  ornamented  with  belts  of  Arabic  wait- 
ing, bordered  with  richly  decorated  hands.  These  three 
storeys  are  built  entirely  of  red  sand-stone,  but  there  is  a 

* Asiatic  Researches  of  Bengal,  IV.,  321. 



difference  in  tlie  colours  of  the  stone,  that  of  the  second  storey 
being  generally  a pale  pinkish  huff,  while  that  of  the  third 
storey  is  a dark  red.  The  whole  of  the  upper  part  of  the 
fourth  storey  is  built  of  white  marble,  and  there  are  also  two 
ornamental  hands  of  white  marble  in  the  fifth  storey.  Ac- 
cording to  Ibn  Batuta,*  the  pillar  was  said  to  have  been  built 
“ of  stones  from  seven  different  quaries ;”  hut  I could  not 
trace  more  than  three  different  kinds  of  stone,  viz.,  the  grey 
quartzose  rock  of  Delhi,  the  white  marble  of  Jaypur,  and  the 
red  sand-stone  of  the  hills  to  the  south  of  Delhi.  If,  however, 
the  different  colours  of  the  sand-stone  he  taken  into  account, 
there  are  certainly  three  distinct  colours,  or  huff,  pink,  and 
red,  which  may  he  considered  as  forming  three  distinct  varie- 
ties of  sand-stone.  The  grey  quartzose  stone  is  used  only 
in  the  interior  of  the  building,  and  the  white  marble  is  con- 
fined to  the  two  upper  storeys.  Inside  the  pillar  there  is  a 
spiral  staircase  of  376  steps  from  the  ground  level  to  the 
balcony  of  the  fifth  storey.  Above  this,  there  are  three  steps 
more  to  the  present  top  of  the  stone-work,  which  once  formed 
the  floor  of  the  paltry  pavilion  which  Major  Robert  Smith 
was  allowed  to  stick  on  the  top  of  this  noble  column. 

In  179-4,  when  Ensign  Blunt  sketched  the  Kutb  Minar, 
the  old  cupola  of  Eiruz  Shah  was  still  standing,  although 
much  ruined.  Blunt’s  rude  sketch,  as  given  in  the  Asiatic 
Researches,  conveys  no  intelligible  idea  of  the  old  cupola, 
and  is  sarcastically  compared  by  Robert  Smith  to  “a  large 
stone  harp.”  A better  idea  of  the  old  cupola  will  he  formed 
from  an  aqua-tint  view  of  the  pillar  given  in  Blagdon’s  “ Brief 
History  of  India,”  which  was  published  about  lSOo.f  By 
comparing  this  view  with  the  statement  of  the  Natives  that 
the  old  cupola  was  a “ plain  square  top  on  four  stone  pil- 
lars,” X I think  that  it  would  he  quite  possible  to  restore  the 
upper  part  of  the  pillar  in  a style  that  would  harmonize  with 
the  rest  of  the  building.  It  is  difficult,  indeed,  to  conceive 
anything  more  incongruous  than  the  flimsy  Mogul  pavilion, 
which  Robert  Smith  fixed  on  the  “ top  of  this  grand  and 
massive  specimen  of  Pathan  architecture.”  In  my  Note-hook 
of  1S39,  I find  a remark  that  “ the  balustrades  of  the 

* Travels  by  Dr.  Lee,  p.  111. 

f Most  of  the  views  of  this  book  are  by  Daniell.  The  value  of  the  letter  press  may  be 
judged  by  the  name  given  to  the  pillar,  “ Kuttull  Minor  of  Delhi.” 

£ Robert  Smith’s  Report  in  Journal,  Archeological  Society  of  Delhi 



balconies  and  the  plain  slight  building  on  tbe  top  of  tbe  pillar 
do  not  harmonize  with  the  massive  and  richly  ornamented 
Pathan  architecture.”  Major  Smith’s  pavilion  was  taken 
down  in  1847  or  1848  by  order  of  Lord  Hardinge.  I pre- 
sume that  this  was  done  at  the  suggestion  of  his  eldest  son, 
the  present  Lord  Hardinge,  whose  known  artistic  taste  and 
skill  would  at  once  have  detected  the  architectural  unfitness 
of  such  a flimsy  pavilion  for  the  summit  of  this  noble 

On  the  1st  of  August  1803,  the  old  cupola  of  the  Kutb 
Minar  was  thrown  down,  and  the  whole  pillar  seriously  in- 
jured by  an  earthquake.  A drawing  of  the  pillar,  while  it 
was  in  this  state,  was  made  by  Captain  Elliot  upwards  of 
two  years  after  the  earthquake,  but  the  engraving  of  this 
drawing  is  too  small  to  show  the  nature  of  the  balustrades 
of  the  balconies.  About  this  time  the  dangerous  state  of 
the  pillar  was  brought  to  the  notice  of  the  Governor  General, 
who  authorized  the  necessary  repairs  to  be  begun  at  once. 
This  difficult  work  was  entrusted  to  Major  Robert  Smith,  of 
the  Engineers,  and  was  completed  by  the  beginning  of  the 
year  1828,  at  a cost  of  Es.  17,000,  with  a further  charge  of 
more  than  Es.  5,000  for  clearing  the  ruins  around  the  pillar. 
The  intricate  nature  of  some  of  these  repairs  can  be  best 
seen  and  understood  by  an  examination  of  Mallitte’s  large 
photograph  of  the  lower  balcony.  All  the  forms  of  the 
mouldings  have  been  carefully  preserved,  but  the  rich  orna- 
mentation has  been  omitted  as  too  costly,  and  the  new  stone- 
work is,, therefore,  quite  plain  throughout.  This  part  of  the 
work  appears  to  have  been  done  with  much  patience  and 
skill,  and  Major  Smith  deserves  credit  for  the  conscientious 
care  which  he  bestowed  upon  it.  But  this  commendation 
must  be  confined  to  the  repairs , for  the  restorations  of  tbe 
entrance  door- way,  of  the  balustrades,  and  of  the  cupola,  are 
altogether  out  of  keeping  with  the  rest  of  the  pillar. 

It  appears  from  Major  Smith’s  report  that  the  old 
entrance  doorway  was  still  in  existence  at  that  time,  although 
much  broken.  This  being  the  case,  he  should  have  adhered 
strictly  to  the  original  design,  instead  of  which,  to  use  his 
own  words,  “ the  former  rude  and  fractured  entrance  door  of 
the  base  of  the  column  (was)  repaired,  and  improved  with 
new  mouldings,  frieze , and  repair  of  the  inscription  tablet.” 
From  this  statement  I infer  that  the  whole  of  the  entrance 



doorway  is  Smith’s  own  design,  a conclusion  which  has  already 
been  drawn  by  Mr.  Eergusson,  who  denounces  this  work 
as  being  C£  in  the  true  style  of  Strawberry  Hill  Gothic.” 
Perhaps  it  may  not  now  he  possible  to  recover  the  original 
design,  but  its  main  features  may  he  ascertained  from  the 
other  three  existing  doorways.  All  of  these  are  plain,  and 
it  is  evident  from  Major  Smith’s  account  that  the  lower  door- 
way was  also  plain,  or,  as  he  calls  it,  “ rude,”  and  without 
frieze  or  mouldings,  -which  were  added  by  himself.  I con- 
fess, therefore,  that  I should  like  to  see  Smith’s  doorway 
altogether  removed,  and  the  old  entrance  restored  in  the 
simple  but  massive  style  of  the  other  doorways.  The 
entrance  of  the  Koel  Minar,  which  is  still  in  existence,  is 
also  plain,  and  might  be  studied  with  advantage. 

The  flimsy  balustrades  are  even  a greater  eye-sore  than 
the  modern  entrance,  as  they  form  a prominent  part  in  every 
view  of  the  building.  But  although  not  ornamental,  they 
are  useful,  and  might  on  that  account  alone  be  tolerated. 
It  would  not,  however,  be  either  difficult  or  expensive  to 
remove  them,  and  to  furnish  new  balustrades  more  in 
harmony  with  the  rich  style  of  the  balconies.  Ensign  Blunt 
describes  the  old  balustrades  as  “ small  battlements ; ” and 
such,  I believe,  must  have  been  the  nature  of  the  original 
balustrades,  at  once  rich  and  massive,  like  the  battlements 
of  the  older  tombs.  The  present  balustrades  might  be  sold 
with  advantage  in  Delhi,  as  they  belong  to  the  flimsy  style 
of  garden-house  architecture  of  the  present  day. 

The  history  of  the  Kutb  Minar  is  written  in  its  . inscrip- 
tions. In  the  basement  storey  there  are  six  bands  or  belts  of 
inscriptions  encircling  the  tower.  The  uppermost  band  con- 
tains only  some  verses  from  the  Ivoran,  and  the  next  below 
it  gives  the  well  known  ninety -nine  Arabic  names  of  the 
Almighty.  The  third  belt  contains  the  name  and  praises  of 
Mudz-uddin , Abul  Muzafar , Muhammad  Bin  Sum.  The 
fourth  belt  contains  only  a verse  from  the  Koran,  and  the 
fifth  belt  repeats  the  name  and  praises  of  the  Sultan  Muham- 
mad Bin  Sam.  The  lowermost  belt  has  been  too  much 
injured,  both  by  time  and  by  ignorant  restorations,  to  admit 
of  being  read,  but  Syad  Ahmad  has  traced  the  words  “ Amir - 
ul-TJmra,  or  Chief  of  the  “nobles.”  The  inscription  over 
the  entrance  doorway  records  that  “ this  Minar  of  Sultan 
Shams-uddin  Altamsh  having  been  injured,  was  repaired  during 



the  reign  of  Sikandcr  Shah,  son  of  Bahlol,  by  Fateh  Khan, 
the  son  of  Kliawas  Khan,  in  A.  H.  909  or  A.  I).  1503. 

In  the  second  storey  the  inscription  over  the  doorway 
records  that  the  Emperor  Altamsh  ordered  the  completion  of 
the  Minar.  The  lowermost  belt  contains  the  verses  of  the 
Koran  respecting  the  summons  to  prayers  on  Friday,  and  the 
upper  line  contains  the  praises  of  the  Emperor  Altamsh. 
Over  the  door  of  the  third  storey  the  praises  of  Altamsh  are 
repeated,  and  again  in  the  belt  of  inscription  round  the 
column.  In  the  fourth  storey  the  door  inscription  records  that 
the  Minar  was  ordered  to  he  erected  during  the  reign  of 
Altamsh.  The  inscription  over  the  door  of  the  fifth  storey 
states  that  the  Minar  having  been  injured  by  lightning,  was 
repaired  by  the  Emperor  Firuz  Shah  in  A.  H.  770  or 
A.  D.  1368. 

But  besides  these  long  inscriptions,  which  form  part  of 
the  architectural  ornament  of  the  pillar,  there  are  a few  other 
short  records  which  are  worth  preserving.  On  the  basement 
storey  is  recorded  the  name  of  Fazzil,  son  of  Abul  Muali,  the 
Mutawali  or  high  priest ; and  on  one  side  of  the  third  storey  is 
found  the  name  of  Muhammad  Amircho,  Architect.  On  the 
same  storey,  also,  there  is  a short  Nagari  inscription  in  one 
line  with  the  name  of  Muhammad  Sultan  and  the  date  of 
Samvat  1382  or  A.  D.  1325,  which  was  the  first  year  of 
Muhammad  Tughlak’s  reign.  On  the  wall  of  the  fourth 
storey  there  is  another  Ndgari  inscription,  in  two  lines,  which 
is  dated  in  the  Samvat  year  1425  or  A.  D.  1368,  in  the 
reign  of  JPiroj  Sdh,  or  Firuz  Shah  Tughlak.  A third  Nagari 
inscription  is  found  on  the  south  jamb  of  the  doorway  of  the 
fourth  storey,  cut  partly  on  the  white  marble  and  partly  on  the 
red  sand-stone.  This  also  gives  the  name  of  Firuz  Shall,  but 
the  date  is  one  year  later  than  the  last,  or  Samvat  1426. 
This  is  the  longest  and  most  important  of  the  N agari  inscrip- 
tions, hut  unfortunately  it  is  not  in  such  a state  of  preserva- 
tion, more  especially  the  upper  portion  on  the  white  marble, 
as  to  be  easily  legible.  I can  make  out  the  words  Sri 
Viswakarma  prasdde  ruchita , and  towards  the  end  I find  the 
title  of  Silpi,  or  “ Architect,”  applied  to  the  son  of  Chdhada 
Deva  Pdla,  named  Nana  salha,  who  repaired  the  Minar. 
But  in  the  middle  of  the  inscription  I find  no  less  than  five 
numbers  given  in  figures,  all  of  which  are  preceded  by  the 
word  gaj , as  gaj  22,  gaj  3,  gaj  26,  gaj  131,  and  gag  134.  I 



infer  from  these  measurements  that  the  inscription  may  pro- 
bably be  of  some  importance  in  determining  the  nature  and 
extent  of  the  repairs  that  were  executed  by  Firuz  Shah. 
As  I read  one  passage  of  this  inscription,  the  Architect  was 
obliged  to  pull  down  fnipatit)  a considerable  portion  of  the 

It  now  only  remains  to  ascertain  who  was  the  actual 
builder  of  the  Kutb  Minar.  The  learned  Syad  Ahmad 
assigns  the  original  building  of  the  basement  storey  to  Bai 
Pithora,  and  its  adaptation  by  the  Musalmans  to  Kutb-uddin 
Aibeg.  The  name  and  titles  of  this  King  were,  he  thinks, 
engraved  in  the  lowermost  band  of  inscriptions,  as  the  legible 
words  of  this  band  correspond  with  a portion  of  Aibeg’s 
inscription  over  the  inner  arch  of  the  eastern  gateway  of  the 
Great  Mosque.  The  completion  of  the  Minar  he  assigns  to 
Altamsh.  The  claim  of  the  Hindus  has  already  been  fully 
discussed  and  disposed  of  as  altogether  baseless.  That  of 
Kutb-uddin  Aibeg  is  founded  chiefly  on  the  fact  that  the 
pillar  is  called  by  his  name,  and  partly  on  the  fact  that  the 
name  of  Muhammad  Bin  Sam  is  twice  recorded  on  the  lower 
storey  of  the  column.  The  occurrence  of  this  name  makes 
it  highly  probable  that  the  name  of  Kutb-uddin  Aibeg  was 
also  engraved  on  this  storey,  as  argued  by  Syad  Ahmed. 
With  these  two  names  engraved  on  the  basement  storey  it 
seems  only  natural  to  conclude  that  the  building  of  the  pillar 
was  begun  by  Aibeg  during  the  life-time  of  his  Suzerain, 
Muhammad  Bin  Sam,  and  in  full  accordance  with  this  con- 
clusion is  the  statement  recorded  over  the  doorway  of  the 
second  storey,  that  the  completion  of  the  pillar  was  ordered  by 
Altamsh.  Under  this  view  the  building  of  the  Minar  may 
have  been  begun  by  Aibeg  in  about  A.  D.  1200,  and  com- 
pleted by  Altamsh  in  about  1220. 

The  other  view  which  attributes  the  foundation  of  the 
pillar  to  Altamsh  is  based  chiefly,  I believe,  on  the  state- 
ments of  Abulfeda  and  Sliams-i-Sirdj,  which  are  supported 
by  the  inscription  of  Sikandar  Lodi  over  the  entrance 
door  of  the  pillar.  Syad  Ahmad  refers  to  the  inscription 

* I may  mention  that  the  sum  of  the  two  numbers  22  + 26  = -18  gaj,  taken  at  the  value 
of  the  gaj  obtained  from  the  length  of  Firuz  Shah’s  Lat,  namely,  1 6 094  inches,  amounts  to 
62  feet  8J  inches,  which  I would  compare  with  the  height  of  the  two  upper  storeys  of  62  feet 
6 inches  as  derived  from  Lieutenant  Blunt’s  measurement,  taken  before  the  pillar  was  injured 
by  lightning. 



over  the  doorway  of  the  second  storey,  which  records  that 
Altamsh  ordered  the  completion  of  the  Minar,  as  a proof  that 
he  did  not  commence  it.  But  another  inscription  over  the 
doorway  of  the  fourth  storey  seems  to  he  equally  explicit  in 
assigning  the  beginning  of  the  Minar  to  Altamsh.  Both 
Syad  Ahmad  and  Nawab  Zia-uddin  give  the  same  translation 
of  this  inscription,  namely,  that  “the  erection  of  this  build- 
ing was  ordered  during  the  reign  of  Shamsuddin  Altamsh.” 
It  is  possible,  however,  that  the  order  recorded  in  this  inscrip- 
tion may  refer  to  the  fourth  storey  only,  and  as  this  limited 
view  of  its  meaning  will  bring  the  two  otherwise  conflicting 
inscriptions  into  strict  accord  with  each  other,  I think  that 
it  may  be  accepted  as  the  most  probable  intention  of  the 
inscriber.  The  statements  of  Abulfeda,  Shams-Siraj,  and 
Sikandar  Lodi,  all  of  which  agree  in  calling  this  pillar  the 
Minar  of  Altamsh,  may,  perhaps,  be  explained  as  conveying 
only  the  popular  opinion,  and  are  certainly  not  entitled  to 
the  same  weight  as  the  two  inscriptions  on  the  basement 
storey  which  record  the  name  and  titles  of  Muhammad  Bin 
Sam,  the  Suzerain  of  Kutb-uddin  Aibeg,  whose  name  is  now 
attached  to  the  pillar.  The  absence  of  Altamsh’s  name  in 
the  inscription  of  the  lower  storey  is,  I think,  a conclusive 
proof  that  he  himself  did  not  claim  it  as  his  own  work.* 

According  to  Syad  Ahmad,  the  Emperor  Altamsh  erected 
five  storeys  in  addition  to  the  basement  storey,  and  another 
storey  was  afterwards  added  by  Eiruz  Shah ; thus  making,  alto- 
gether, seven  storeys,  of  which  he  says  that  “ two  have  fallen 
down  and  five  remain  to  this  day.’  But’  both  of  these  state- 
ments I’ believe  to  be  quite  erroneous,  for  the  mention  of  360 
steps  by  Abulfeda  in  about  A.  D.  1300,  makes  it  certain  that 
the  Minar,  as  completed  by  Altamsh,  could  not  have  been 
higher  than  the  present  one,  which  has  379  steps.  The  five 
stories  of  Altamsh  must,  therefore,  have  included  the  basement 
storey,  which,  although  begun  by  Aibeg,  was  most  probably 
completed  by  himself.  In  this  state  the  Minar  must  have 
remained  until  the  reign  of  Eiruz  Tughlak,  when,  having  been 
struck  by  lightning,  it  was  repaired  by  that  Emperor  in  A.  II. 
770,  or  A.  I).  1368.  The  nature  and  extent  of  his  repairs 
may,  I think,  be  gathered  from  the  insciptions ; thus,  the 
inscription  of  the  fifth  storey  is  placed  over  the  doorway,  and 

* The  Emperor  FiruzSliah,  who  repaired  the  pillar,  calls  it  “the  Mintira  of  Muiz-ud-din 
Sam.” — Dowson’s  edition  of  Sir  H.  M.  Elliot’s  Historians,  III.,  383. 



there  is  no  record  of  any  other  Emperor  on  this  storey.  I 
conclude,  therefore,  that  the  whole  of  the  fifth  storey  was 
re-built  by  Eiruz  Shah.  But  as  there  are  two  inscriptions 
of  his  reign  recorded  on  the  fourth  storey,  I infer  that  he 
must  have  made  some  repairs  to  it  also,  although  these 
repairs  could  not  have  been  extensive,  as  the  inscription 
over  the  doorway  of  this  storey  belongs  to  the  reign  of 
Altamsh.*  Under  this  view  the  Kutb  Minar  has  always 
consisted  of  five  storeys,  from  the  time  of  its  completion  by 
Altamsh  in  about  A.  D.  1220,  down  to  the  present  day. 

Of  the  same  age  as  the  Kutb  Minar  is  the  tomb  of  the 
Emperor  Altamsh,  who  died  in  A.  H.  633  or  A.  D.  1235. 
It  is  situated  just  outside  the  north-west  corner  of  the  Great 
Mosque,  as  enlarged  by  Altamsh  himself.  The  interior  is  a 
square  of  29^  feet,  with  walls  7^  feet  thick,  making  the 
exterior  a square  of  41  feet.  The  main  entrance  is  to  the 
east,  but  there  are  also  openings  to  the  north  and  south ; and 
to  the  west  there  is  a niche,  such  as  is  usually  found  in  a 
small  mosque.  The  interior  walls  are  decorated  throughout 
with  elaborate  and  highly  finished  ornament  of  great  beauty. 
There  is  no  roof  to  the  building,  hut  there  is  good  reason 
to  believe  that  it  was  originally  covered  by  an  overlapping 
Hindu  dome.  A single  stone  of  one  of  the  overlapping 
circles,  with  Arabic  letters  on  it,  still  remains. 

The  only  other  buildings  connected  with  the  Great 
Mosque  of  Delhi  are  the  beautiful  south  gateway  of  the 
quadrangle,  and  the  gigantic  unfinished  Minar,  both  of  which 
were  the  work  of  Ala-uddin  Khilji,  who  reigned  from  A.  D. 
1296  to  1316.  The  south  gateway  is  called  by  Syad  Ahmad 

* See  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1S66,  p,  205,  where  Mr.  C.  J.  Campbell,  C.  E., 
argues  that  the  whole  of  the  fourth  storey  was  “ newly  designed’’  by  Firuz  Shah.  I had 
already  come  to  this  conclusion  when  I re-visited  the  Kutb  Minar  in  October  1864,  and  I am 
glad  to  have  my  views  corroborated  by  Mr.  Campbell,  whose  long  residence  at  Delhi,  and 
early  training  as  a Civil  Engineer,  give  special  weight  to  his  opinion  on  any  arcliitectural 
point.  He  particularly  notices  that  the  arches  in  the  two  upper  storeys  have  true  voussoirs, 
whilst  in  three  lower  storeys  they  are  all  overlapping  Hindu  arches.  I agree,  therefore,  with 
Mr.  Campbell  that  “ the  old  tablet  of  Altamsh  has  been  simply  re-built  into  the  new  work  of 
Firuz  Shah.”  But  the  chief  glory  of  the  Kutb  Minar  lies  in  its  deeply  fluted  shaft,  and  its 
exquisite  balconies  of  bold  design  and  delicate  tracery.  All  these,  it  seems,  we  owe  to  a 
new  claimant  whose  name  has  not  yet  been  mentioned.  Speaking  of  the  new  Minar  which 
Ala-uddin  Khilji  had  ordered  to  be  built,  Amir  Khusru  states  that  he  also  “directed  that  a new 
casing  and  cupola  should  be  added  to  the  old  one.” — Tarikh-i-Alai  in  Dowson’s  edition  of  Sir 
H.  M.  Elliot’s  Historians,  III.,  70.  From  this  I conclude  that  the  whole  of  the  present  red 
stone  facing  was  added  by  Ala-uddin,  and  that  to  his  reign  we  must  assign  all  that  is  rich 
and  beautiful  in  its  decoration,  while  the  design  alone  belongs  to  the  time  of  Kutb-uddin 



the  Alai  Darwdza'  or  “ Gate  of  Ala-uddin but  this  appella- 
tion is  not  known  to  the  people.  The  age  of  the  building  is, 
however,  quite  certain,  as  the  name  of  Ala-uddin  is  several 
times  repeated  in  the  Arabic  inscriptions  over  three  of  the 
entrances,  with  the  addition  of  his  well  known  title  of 
SiJcandar  Sani,  and  the  date  of  A.  H.  710  or  A.  D.  1310. 
This  date  had  already  been  anticipated,  from  the  style  of  the 
building,  by  Mr.  Fergusson,  who  considered  the  gateway  as 
at  least  a century  more  modern  than  the  tomb  of  Altamsh. 
The  building  is  a square  of  34^  feet  inside,  and  56^  feet 
outside,  the  walls  being  11  feet  thick.  On  each  side  there  is 
a lofty  doorway,  with  a pointed  horse-shoe  arch  ; the  outer 
edge  of  the  arch  being  fretted,  and  the  underside  panelled. 
The  corners  of  the  square  are  cut  off  by  bold  niches,  the 
head  of  each  niche  being  formed  by  a series  of  five  pointed 
horse-shoe  arches,  lessening  in  size  as  they  retire  towards  the 
angle.  The  effect  of  this  arrangement  is  massive  and  beauti- 
ful, and  justly  merits  the  praise  which  Mr.  Fergusson*  had 
bestowed  upon  it,  as  “ more  simply  elegant  than  any  other 
Indian  example  with  which  he  was  acquainted.”  The 
interior  walls  are  decorated  with  a chequered  pattern  of 
singular  beauty.  In  each  corner  there  are  two  windows  of 
the  same  shape  and  style  as  the  doorways,  but  only  one-third 
of  their  size.  These  are  closed  by  massive  screens  of  marble 
lattice-work.  The  exterior  walls  are  panelled  and  inlaid 
with  broad  bands  of  white  marble,  the  effect  of  which  is 
certainly  pleasing.  The  walls  are  crowned  by  a battlemented 
parapet  and  surmounted  by  a hemispherical  dome.  For 
the  exterior  view  of  the  building  this  dome  is,  perhaps,  too 
low,  but  the  interior  view  is  perfect,  and,  taken  altogether, 

I consider  that  the  gateway  of  Ala-uddin  is  the  most  beauti- 
ful specimen  of  Patkan  architecture  that  I have  seen. 

The  unfinished  Minar  of  Ala-uddin  stands  due  north 
from  the  Kutb  Minar  at  a distance  of  425  feet.  This  massive 
pillar  as  it  stands  at  present  is  built  wholly  of  the  rough 
shapeless  grey  stone  of  the  country,  and  the  surface  is  so 
uneven  that  there  can  be  no  doubt  it  was  the  Architect’s 
intention  either  to  have  faced  it  with  red  stone,  or  to  have 
covered  it  with  plaster.  The  Minar  stands  upon  a plinth  4| 

* Hand-book  of  Architeeure,  I.,  433. 



feet  in.  width,  and  the  same  in  height,  which  is  raised  upon  a 
terrace  21  feet  in  breadth  and  7^  in  height.  The  rough  mass 
of  the  superstructure  is  257  feet  in  circumference,  and  82  feet 
in  diameter ; hut  with  a facing  of  red  stone,  this  diameter 
would  have  been  increased  to  at  least  85  feet,  or  nearly  double 
that  of  the  Kuth  Minar,  as  is  usually  stated  by  the  people.* 
The  entrance  is  on  the  east  side,  and  on  the  north,  at  same 
height,  there  is  a window  intended  to  light  the  spiral  stair- 
case. But  the  steps  were  never  commenced,  and  there  is 
only  a circular  passage  9 feet  9 inches  wide  around  the  central 
pillar,  which  is  26  feet  in  diameter.  The  thickness  of  the 
outer  wall  is  18  feet  3 inches,  the  whole  pillar  being  82  feet 
in  diameter,  as  noted  above.  The  total  height  of  the  column, 
as  it  now  stands,  is  about  75  feet  above  the  plinth,  or  87 
feet  about  the  ground  level.  The  outer  face  of  the  wall  is 
divided  into  32  sides  of  8 feet  and  ^ inch  each.  The  form 
of  each  face  or  flute  is  difficult  to  describe,  but  it  may  be 
likened  to  the  shape  of  a crown  work  in  fortification,  or  to 
that  of  an  old  Boman  M with  shallow  body  and  long  widely- 
splayed  limbs.  I think,  it  probable  that  the  central  angle 
of  each  face,  as  it  now  exists  in  the  rough  stone,  would  have 
been  modified  in  the  red  stone  facing  into  a shallow  curved 
flute.  The  flutes  would  have  been  4 feet  wide  and  4 feet 
apart,  with  a deep  angle  between  them.  The  plinth  is  also 
divided  into  32  straight  faces,  or  projections,  which  are 
separated  by  the  same  number  of  depressions  of  equal 
breadth,  the  whole  being  exactly  like  a gigantic  cogwheel. 
Syad  Ahmad  states  that  the  building  of  this  Minar  was 
commenced  in  A.  H.  711  or  A.  D.  1311 ; but  as  Ala-uddin 
did  not  die  until  A.  D.  1316,  the  work  was  probably  stopped 
some  time  before  the  end  of  his  reign.  I suspect,  indeed, 
that  the  work  was  actually  stopped  in  the  following  year, 
as  I find  from  Berishta  that  in  A.  D.  1312  the  King  became 
so  extremely  ill  that  his  wife  and  son  entirely  neglected 
him,  while  his  Minister  exercised  all  the  powers  of  the  State, 
and  even  aspired  to  the  throne.  As  the  King  never  rallied, 
it  seems  not  improbable  that  all  the  expensive  works  of  Ala- 
uddin  then  in  progress  may  have  been  stopped  by  the 
Minister,  who  wished  to  secure  the  money  for  himself. 

* Amir  Khusru,  in  his  Tarikh-i-Alai,  distinctly  states  that  he  ordered  the  circumfer- 
ence of  the  new  Minar  to  be  double  that  of  the  old  one,  and  to  make  it  higher  in  the  same, 




The  Port  of  Siri,  with  Ala-uddin’s  celebrated  palace  ol 
“ The  Thousand  Pillars,”  has  been  identified  by  Messrs.  Cope 
and  Lewis,  and  also  by  Lieutenant  Burgess,  the  Surveyor  of 
the  ruins  of  Delhi,  with  the  citadel  of  Bai  Pithora' s fort,  in 
the  midst  of  which  stands  the  Kutb  Minar.  But  in  describ- 
ing this  fort  I have  already  brought  forward  strong  reasons 
to  show  that  it  was  the  ancient  Lcilhot  of  Anang  Pal,  and 
I now  propose  to  follow  up  the  same  argument  by  proving 
that  the  true  site  of  Siri  was  the  old  ruined  fort  to  the  north- 
east of  Bai  Pithora’s  fort,  which  is  at  present  called  Shahpur. 
A glance  at  the  Sketch  Map  of  the  ruins  of  Delhi,*  which 
accompanies  this  account,  is  all  that  is  necessary  to  make 
the  following  argument  quite  clear. 

Sharaf-uddin,  the  historian  of  Timur,  describes  Delhi 
as  consisting  of  three  cities,  and  as  quite  distinct  from  Piruza- 
had,  near  which  the  conqueror’s  camp  was  pitched.  These 
three  cities  were  Siri,  Jahdn-pandh,  and  old  Delhi.  To  the 
north-east  was  Siri,  the  walls  of  which  formed  a circle,  and 
to  the  south-west  was  old  Delhi,  similar  in  form  but  larger 
than  Siri,  and  the  space  between  the  two  forts,  which  was 
much  larger  than  old  Delhi,  was  Jahdn-pandh.  The  rela- 
tive sizes  and  positions  of  the  three  cities  are  here  so 
accurately  described  that  it  is  quite  impossible  to  mistake 
them.  Siri  answers  exactly  to  Shahpur,  not  only  in  size 
and  position,  hut  also  in  shape ; for,  though  not  circular,  it 
is  certainly  oval.  To  the  south-west  of  Shahpur  lies  the  fort 
of  Bai  Pithora,  which,  therefore,  corresponds  exactly  with  the 
old  Delhi  of  Sharaf-uddin,  both  in  its  size  and  in  its  position, 
and  somewhat  also  in  its  form,  which  may  he  described 
as  an  oblong  square  with  tbe  corners  cut  off.  Tlie  name 
of  old  Delhi  was  appropriately  applied  to  tbe  fort  of  B,ai 
Pithora  as  by  far  the  most  ancient  of  the  three  cities. 
Between  Siri  and  old  Delhi  was  Jahdn-pandh,  a name  which 
is  still  applied  to  the  old  walled  city  between  Shahpur  and 
Bai  Pithora’s  fort ; and  as  the  size  of  this  city  is  more  than 
double  that  of  Bai  Pitbora’s  fort,  there  can  be  no  doubt  what- 
ever of  its  identity  with  the  Jahan-panah  of  former  days. 

I now  turn  to  Perishta’s  account  of  Turghai  Khan’s 
invasion  of  India  during  the  reign  of  Ala-uddin,  the  founder 

* See  Plate  Xo.  XXXV. 



of  Siri.  In.  A.  H.  703  or  A.  D.  1303  the  Mogul  Chief 
reached  Delhi  with  120,000  horse  and  encamped  on  tlie 
bank  of  the  Jumna,  most  probably  about  the  spot  where 
Humayun’s  tomb  now  stands,  as  that  is  the  nearest  point  of 
the  river  towards  old  Delhi.  “ The  King,”  as  Eerishta 
relates,  “ was  in  no  condition  to  face  the  enemy  on  equal 
terms,  and,  therefore,  contented  himself  with  entrenching  his 
infantry  on  the  plain  beyond  the  suburbs  till  he  could 
collect  the  forces  of  the  distant  districts.”  But  after  the 
lapse  of  two  months  the  Mogul  troops  were  seized  with  a 
panic,  and  retreated  precipitately  to  their  own  country. 
The  historian  then  relates  that  ct  Ala-uddin,  relieved  from  the 
perils  of  this  invasion,  caused  a palace  to  he  built  on  the 
spot  where  he  had  entrenched  himself,  and  directed  the 
citadel  of  old  Delhi  to  he  pulled  down  and  built  anew.”* 
Now  the  spot  where  the  King  entrenched  himself  may  he 
fixed  with  some  precision,  partly  from  Eerishta’s  description 
that  it  was  outside  the  suburbs,  and  partly  from  the  strategi- 
cal consideration  that  it  must  have  been  on  the  north-east 
side  facing  towards  the  enemy,  and  covering  the  city.  On 
this  side  the  suburbs  of  old  Delhi  extended  for  a consider- 
able distance.  We  know,  also,  that  they  were  without  walls, 
because  the  Moguls  plundered  them  during  their  stay,  and 
because  they  were  afterwards  enclosed  by  Muhammad 
Tughlak,  when  they  received  the  separate  name  of  Jahan- 
panah.  Immediately  in  front  of  these  suburbs,  and  facing 
towards  the  enemy,  is  the  old  ruined  fort  of  Shahpur,  and 
inside  the  western  half  of  this  fort  there  still  exist  the  re- 
mains of  a large  palace  and  other  buildings.  This  should 
be  the  site  of  the  celebrated  Kasr-Razar-Sutdn,  or  “ Palace 
of  One  Thousand  Pillars,”  otherwise  Razar  Mindr , or 
“ thousand  minarets,”  which  Ala-uddin  built  on  the  spot 
where  he  had  entrenched  himself. 

There  is  yet  one  more  evidence  which  I can  bring  forward 
in  favour  of  the  identification  of  Siri  with  Shahpur.  In  the 
Ain  Akbari  it  is  related  that  Shir  Shah  destroyed  the  city  built 
by  Ala-uddin,  which  was  called  Siri,  and  founded  another.! 
Again,  in  the  Araish-i-Malifil  it  is  recorded  that  Shir  Shah 
pulled  down  the  Kusliak  Sahz,  or  the  “ Green  Palace,”  and 

* Brigg’s  translation,  I.,  354. 
t Gladwin’s  translation,  II.,  86. 



built  a new  city.  Syad  Alimacl  repeats  the  same  story, 
adding  that  the  materials  of  the  old  fort  and  palace  of  Siri 
were  used  in  the  construction  of  the  new  fort  of  Shir-Shah- 
Kot.  Erom  these  accounts  it  is  quite  certain  that  Siri 
cannot  he  identified  with  the  citadel  that  surrounds  the 
Kutb  Minar,  for  the  walls  of  Siri  were  pulled  down 
and  the  materials  removed  by  Shir  Shah,  while  the  walls 
of  the  Kutb  Minar  Citadel  are  still  standing.  And,  further, 
it  seems  almost  certain  that  Sh&hpur  must  be  Siri,  because 
of  its  vicinity  to  the  new  site  of  Shir  Shah’s  fort,  for  it  is 
hardly  possible  to  believe  that  the  King  would  have  brought 
his  building  stones  from  the  Kutb  Minar,  a distance  of  seven 
miles,  when  he  could  have  obtained  them  from  Shalipur, 
which  is  only  half  the  distance.  That  he  did  obtain  his 
materials  from  the  latter  place,  and  not  from  the  former,  may 
be  regarded  as  almost  certain,  for  the  very  sufficient  reason 
that  the  walls  of  Shahpur  have  actually  been  removed,  while 
those  of  the  Kutb  Citadel  are  still  standing. 

The  only  evidence  in  favour  of  the  identification  of 
Siri  with  the  Kutb  Citadel  is  the  fact  which  Eerishta  records, 
that  the  citadel  of  old  Delhi  was  re-built  by  Ala-uddin,  and 
the  existence  near  the  Kutb  Minar  of  the  remains  of  an 
old  Palace,  which  still  bears  this  King’s  name.*  As  the 
historian  does  not  mention  the  new  city  of  Siri,  it  would 
seem  to  have  been  inferred  that  the  re-building  of  the  citadel 
of  old  Delhi  was  only  a perverted  account  of  the  founding 
of  the  new  city  of  Siri.  I see  no  reason,  however,  why 
Eerishta’s  statement  should  not  be  accepted  exactly  as  it 
stands,  for,  on  summing  up  the  works  of  Ala-uddin,  he 
records t that,  during  liis  reign,  “ Palaces,  Mosques,  Uni- 
versities, Baths,  Mansolea,  Forts,  and  all  kinds  of  public- 
and  private  buildings  seemed  to  rise  as  if  by  magic.”  As 
from  this  account  it  would  appear  that  Ala-uddin  built 
more  than  one  fort,  and  founded  more  than  one  palace, 
I see  no  difficulty  in  assigning  to  him  the  building  of  the 
palace  near  the  Kutb  Minar,  and  the  re-building  of  the 
citadel  of  old  Delhi,  as  well  as  the  founding  of  the  new 
city  of  Siri  and  its  celebrated  Palace  of  Kasr-Eazdr-sutun, 
or  “ The  Thousand  Pillars.”  Much  stress  has  been  laid  upon 
another  statement  made  by  Eerishta  regarding  the  meeting 

* According  to  Lieutenant  Burgess’  Map  of  the  ftuins  of  Delhi. 

f Brigg’s  translation,  I.,  355. 

c 2 



of  Nusrat  Shall  ancl  Mnllu  Khan  in  the  Palace  of  Siri  at  the 
tomb  of  Khwaja  Kutb-uddin  Baklitiar  Kaki.  But  this  state- 
ment, and  others  connected  with  the  confused  history  of  this 
period,  only  shows  that  Perishta  was  not  well  acquainted 
with  the  topography  of  ancient  Delhi.  Thus  he  records  that 
Mahmud  Shah  occupied  old  Delhi , and  Nusrat  Shah  held 
Firuzcibad,  while  Siri  was  in  the  possession  of  Mullu  Khan 
and  other  Nobles  who  professed  neutrality.  He  then  relates 
that  Mullu  made  overtures  to  Nusrat,  who  came  to  Siri,  when 
a mutual  compact  was  sworn  at  the  tomb  of  Khwaja  Kutb- 
uddin  in  Siri.  But  as  this  tomb  is  close  to  the  Kutb  Minar, 
and  within  the  walls  of  the  citadel  of  old  Delhi,  which  was 
then  held  by  Mahmud,  it  would  have  been  impossible  for 
Nusrat  and  Mullu  to  have  met  there.* * * §  I would  suggest 
that  the  place  of  meeting  may  have  been  the  shrine  of  the 
famous  Saint  called  Chiragh  Delhi,  or  the  “Lamp  of  Delhi,” 
which  is  just  outside  the  south-east  comer  of  Shahpur  or 

My  identification  of  Siri  with  Shahpur  has  been  con- 
tested by  Mr.  C.  J.  Campbell,  c.  E.t  I have  now  gone  over 
the  whole  subject  again  very  carefully,  and  I have  found  the 
most  ample,  complete,  and  satisfactory  evidence  of  the 
absolute  correctness  of  my  identification.  A brief  abstract 
of  the  principal  facts  is  all  that  need  be  given  in  this  place : 

1st. — Whenever  Siri  is  mentioned  before  Ala-uddin  built 
his  fort  in  A.  H.  703,  it  is  described  as  a plain  outside  the  city 
of  Delhi,  on  which  armies  encamp.  Thus  Amir  Khusru 
states  that  the  left  wing  of  the  army  of  Kaikubad  in  t A.  H. 
687  was  encamped  at  Indrpat,  the  centre  at  Siri,  and 
the  right  wing  at  Tilpat4  Siri  was,  therefore,  just  half  way 
between  Indrpat  and  Tilpat,  which  corresponds  exactly  with 
the  position  of  Shahpur. 

2nd—  In  A.  H.  695,  when  Ala-uddin,  after  the  murder  of 
his  uncle,  advanced  against  Delhi,  he  encamped  on  the  plain 
of  Siri,  while  his  cousin  Kukn-uddin  Ibrahim  still  held 
Delhi.  § 

* Note. — I would  suggest  that  Ferishta  may  have  substituted  the  name  of  liakhtiar 
Kaki,  who  was  commonly  called  Roshan  Zamir  for  that  of  Roshan  Chirdjh,  whose  fame  was 
more  local. 

f Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1866,  p.  206. 

X Elliot,  III.,  525. 

§ Zia-uddin  Barni  in  Elliot,  III.,  160. 



3rd, — In  A.  It.  697,  when  Kutlugli  Kliwaja  advanced 
against  Delhi,  great  anxiety  prevailed  because  the  old  forti- 
fications had  not  been  kept  in  repair.  The  people  crowded 
into  the  city ; hut  “ the  Sultan  marched  out  of  Delhi,  with 
great  display  and  pitched  his  tent  in  Siri.* * * § 

4 th. — On  a second  invasion  of  the  Moguls  “ the  Sultan 
again  left  the  city  and  encamped  at  Siri,  where  the  superior 
numbers  and  strength  of  the  enemy  compelled  him  to 
entrench  his  camp.”f 

5 th. — After  this,  says  Barni,  he  “built  a palace  at 
Siri.  He  took  up  his  residence  there,  and  made  it  his 
capital,  so  that  it  became  a flourishing  place.  He  ordered 
the  fort  of  Delhi  to  he  repaired.”  Amir  Khusrui  also  men- 
tions the  building  of  the  new  fort  of  Delhi,  and  the  repairs 
of  the  old  one.  From  Ahul  Pazl  we  learn  that  “ Sultan 
Ala-uddin  built  another  city  and  a new  fort  which  they  called 
Siri.”  § 

( Mh . — Ibn  Batutaj]  says,  cc|Dar  ul  Ivhilafat  Siri  was  a totally 
separate  and  detached  town,  situated  at  such  a distance  from 
old  Delhi  as  to  necessitate  the  construction  of  the  walls  of 
Jah&n-panah,  to  bring  them  within  a defensive  circle ; and 
that  the  Hauz-i-kh&s  intervened,  in  an  indirect  line,  between 
the  two  localities.”  Ibn  Batuta  was  one  of  the  Magistrates 
of  Delhi  about  30  years  after  Alau-ddin’s  death;  and  the 
Hauz-i-Khas  still  exists  to  the  west  of  the  direct  road 
between  Shahpur  and  Kila  Bai  Pith  ora,  that  is,  between  Siri 
and  old -Delhi. 

7 th. — Barni^f  states  that  the  fort  of  Siri  was  finished 
during  the  life-time  of  Ala-uddin,  and  from  Amir  Khusru**  we 
learn  that  Mubarak  ee  ordered  the  completion  of  the  fort  and 
city  of  Delhi  begun  by  his  father  (Ala-uddin),  that  is,  Lalkot, 
and  Kila  Bai  Pithora,  which  the  father  had  ordered  to  be 

* Barni  in  Elliot,  III.,  166. 

f Barni  in  Elliot,  III.,  190. 

X Elliot,  III.,  70. 

§ Thomas’  Chronicles  of  Pathan  Kings,  p.  285,  note. 

||  French  translation,  Tom.,  III.,  146,  155,  quoted  by  Thomas. 
If  Elliot,  III.,  200. 

*#  Elliot,  III.,  561. 



8 th. — Barni  describes  Siri  as  a “ spacious  and  extensive 
plain,”  and  states  that  liis  uncle,  the  Kotwal  of  Delhi,  advised 
the  Emperor  to  erect  a villa  at  Siri  where  he  would  be  able 
“ to  take  his  hawks  and  fly  them.”* 

9 th. — It  is  unnecessary  to  multiply  the  proofs  that  Siri 
was  not  the  citadel  of  old  Delhi,  which  now  surrounds  the 
Kutb  Minar.  I will,  therefore,  close  this  note  with  a clear 
and  vivid  description  of  Delhi,  taken  from  the  autobiography 
of  Timur,  f “ When  my  mind  was  no  longer  occupied  with 
the  destruction  of  the  people  of  Delhi,  I took  a ride  round 
the  cities.  Siri  is  a round  city.  Its  buildings  are  lofty ; they 
are  surrounded  by  fortifications  built  of  stone  and  brick,  and 
they  are  very  strong ; old  Delhi  also  has  a similar  strong  fort, 
but  it  is  larger  than  that  of  Siri.  Erom  the  fort  of  Siri  to 
that  of  old  Delhi,  which  is  a considerable  distance,  there 
runs  a strong  wall  built  of  stone  and  cement.  The  part 
called  Jahan-panah  is  situated  in  the  midst  of  the  inhabited 
city.  The  fortifications  of  the  three  cities  have  30  gates, 
Jahan-panah  has  13  gates,  seven  on  the  south  side  bearing 
towards  the  east,  and  six  on  the  north  side  bearing  towards 
the  west.  Siri  has  seven  gates,  four  towards  the  outside, 
and  three  on  the  inside  towards  Jahan-panah.  The 
fortifications  of  old  Delhi  have  10  gates,  some  opening  to- 
wards the  exterior,  and  some  towards  the  interior  of  the 
city.”  This  extract  corroborates  the  account  which  I have 
given  in  the  text  from  Sharaf-ud-din. 

The  next  monuments  in  point  of  time  are  the  grand  old 
fort  of  Tughlakabad,  with  the  tomb  of  its  founder  Tughlak 
Shah,  and  the  castle  of  his  son  Mahammad,  called  Adilabad, 
and  the  city  named  Jahan-panah. 

The  fort  of  Tughlakabad  may  be  described,  with  toler- 
able accuracy,  as  a half  hexagon  in  shape,  with  three  faces 
of  rather  more  than  three-quarters  of  a mile  in  length  each, 
and  a base  of  one  mile  and-a-half,  the  whole  circuit  being  only 
one  furlong  less  than  four  miles.  The  fort  stands  on  a rocky 
height,  and  is  built  of  massive  blocks  of  stone,  so  large  and 
heavy  that  they  must  have  been  quarried  on  the  spot.  The 
largest  stone  which  I observed  measured  14  feet  in  length 

* Major  Fuller’s  translation  in  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1869,  p.  209. 
+ Malfuzat-i-Timuri,  in  Elliot,  111.,  447. 



by  two  feet  two  inches  and  one  foot  ten  inches  in  breadth  and 
thickness,  and  must  have  weighed  rather  more  than  six  tons. 
The  short  faces  to  the  west,  north,  and  east,  are  protected  by 
a deep  ditch,  and  the  long  face  to  the  south  hv  a large  sheet 
of  water,  which  is  held  up  by  an  embankment  at  the  south- 
east corner.  On  this  side  the  rock  is  scarped,  and  above  it 
the  main  walls  rise  to  a mean  height  of  40  feet,  with  a 
parapet  of  seven  feet,  behind  which  rises  another  wall  of  15 
feet,  the  whole  height  above  the  low  ground  being  upwards  of 
90  feet.  In  the  south-west  angle  is  the  citadel,  which  occupies 
about  one-sixth  of  the  area  of  the  fort,  and  contains  the 
ruins  of  an  extensive  palace.  The  ramparts  are  raised,  as 
usual,  on  a line  of  domed-rooms,  which  rarely  communicate 
with  each  other,  and  wdiich,  no  doubt,  formed  the  quarters  of 
the  troops  that  garrisoned  the  fort.  The  walls  slope  rapidly 
inwards,  even  as  much  as  those  of  Egyptian  buildings.  The 
rampart  walls  are  pierced  with  loop-holes,  which  serve  also  to 
give  light  and  air  to  the  soldiers’  quarters.  The  parapets  are 
pierced  with  low  sloping  loop-holes,  wdiich  command  the 
foot  of  the  wall,  and  are  crowned  with  a line  of  rude  battle- 
ments of  solid  stone,  which  are  also  provided  with  loop-holes. 
The  walls  are  built  of  large  plainly  dressed  stones,  and  there 
is  no  ornament  of  any  kind.  But  the  vast  size,  the  great 
strength,  and  the  visible  solidity  of  the  whole  give  to 
Tughlakabad  an  air  of  stern  and  massive  grandeur  that  is 
both  striking  and  impressive. 

The  Eort  of  Tughlakabad  has  13  gates,  and  there  are 
three  inner  gates  to  the  citadel.  It  contains  seven  tanks  for 
water,  besides  the  ruins  of  several  large  buildings,  as  the 
Jama  Masjid  and  the  Birij  Mandir.  The  upper  part  of  the 
fort  is  full  of  ruined  houses,  but  the  lowrer  part  appears  as 
if  it  had  never  been  fully  inhabited.  Syad  Ahmad  states  that 
the  fort  was  commenced  in  A.  D.  1321  and  finished  in 
1323,  or  in  the  short  period  of  two  years.  It  is  admitted  by 
all  that  the  wrork  was  completed  by  Tughlak  himself ; and  as 
his  reign  lasted  for  only  four  years,  from  1321  to  1325,  the 
building  of  the  fort  must  have  been  pushed  forward  with 
great  vigour. 

The  fine  Tomb  of  Tughlak  Shah  was  built  by  his  son 
Muhammad,  who  is  not  without  suspicion  of  having  caused 
his  father’s  death.  In  A.  I).  1304,  during  the  reign  of 
Ala-uddin,  a second  army  of  4,000  Mogul  horse  burst  into 



the  Panjab  and  plundered  the  country  as  far  as  Amroha,  in 
Rohilkhand,  but  they  were  defeated  with  great  slaughter  by 
Tughlak  Khan,  who,  as  a reward  for  his  sendees,  was  ap- 
pointed Governor  of  the  Panjab.  In  the  following  year  a 
third  Mogul  Army  of  57,000  horse  invaded  India  and 
ravaged  Multan ; but  this  army  was  also  defeated  by  Tughlak 
with  such  tremendous  slaughter  that  it  is  said  only  3,000 
prisoners  survived  the  defeat.  Towards  the  end  of  the  same 
year,  a fourth  inavsion  of  Moguls  was  driven  hack  by  the 
same  able  commander,  whose  very  name  at  last  inspired  such 
terror  amongst  the  Moguls  that  the  women  made  use  of  it 
to  quiet  their  children ; and  whenever  a man  showed  any 
alarm,  his  companions  would  ask  “ why  do  you  start  ? Have 
you  seen  Tughlak  ?”  Prom  A.  D.  1305  to  1321  Ghazi  Beg 
Tughlak  was  Governor  of  the  Panjab,  residing  some  times  at 
Labor,  and  some  times  at  Depalpur  and  Multan.  In  the  Port 
of  Multan  he  built  a magnificent  tomb  for  himself,  which 
exists  to  this  day  under  the  title  of  Rokn-i-alam,  a name 
derived  from  Puikn-uddin,  a very  holy  Saint  of  those  days, 
the  son  of  Bah&-uddin  Zakaria,  more  commonly  called 
Bahawal  Hak.  The  people  of  Multan  say  that  Muhammad 
presented  the  tomb  to  Bukn-uddin  to  secure  his  silence  in 
the  matter  of  his  father’s  death ; hut  agreeably  to  another 
version,  Tughlak  himself  had  incurred  the  displeasure  of 
Raikn-uddin  by  an  attempt  to  carry  otf  one  of  his  women.  The 
angry  Saint  prophesied  that  he  would  never  reach  Delhi, 
and  accordingly  he  was  killed  near  Tilpat  just  as  he  was 
about  to  enter  Delhi.  There  may,  perhaps,  he  some  truth  in 
this  tradition,  as  we  learn  from  Ibn  Batuta*  that  Bukn- 
uddin  was  the  most  noted  Saint  in  India,  and  that  his  fame 
had  extended  even  to  Alexandria.  Under  any  circumstances 
it  was  politic  to  conciliate  the  good-will  of  this  influential 
personage,  and  the  worthy  Saint  himself  was  no  doubt 
highly  gratified  with  the  magnificence  of  the  gift.  In  Delhi 
itself  the  death  of  Tughlak  is  attributed  to  another  Saint, 
the  famous  Nizam -uddin  Auliya,  some  of  whose  labourers 
had  been  seized  to  work  on  the  walls  of  Tughlakabad.  The 
holy  man  remonstrated  angrily,  and  his  words  were  conveyed 
to  Tughlak  then  absent  in  Bengal,  who  remarked  that,  on 
his  return  to  Delhi,  he  would  humble  the  proud  Saint.  The 
threat  was  told  to  Nizam-uddin,  who  merely  remarked — “ he 

* Travels,  pp.  7 — 101. 



will  never  return  to  Delhi.”  When  the  Emperor  left  Bengal 
on  his  return  to  the  capital  the  Saint  was  reminded  of  his 
prophecy,  to  which  he  replied  “ Delhi  is  far  off  ( Dilili  dur 
ast,  or  J)ihli  dur  hai).  As  the  Emperor  approached  nearer 
and  nearer,  he  made  the  same  remark ; and  even  when  he  had 
reached  Afghanpur  within  four  miles  of  Tughlakahad,  he 
repeated  his  former  words  “ Delhi  is  far  off,” — Tughlak  was 
killed  at  Afghanpur,  and  the  words  of  the  holy  man  became 
a proverb,  which  is  still  in  common  use.  Nizam -uddin  died 
a few  years  afterwards,  and  his  tomb  was  erected  at  the 
expense  of  Muhammad,  out  of  gratitude,  as  the  people  say, 
for  his  assistance  in  placing  him  on  the  throne. 

I have  referred  to  this  earlier  tomb  of  Tughlak,  which 
still  exists  in  the  fort  of  Multan,  as  it  is  the  oldest  building 
that  I have  seen  with  the  rapidly  sloping  walls,  which  form 
the  most  prominent  feature  of  the  Delhi  tomb.  The  Bokn- 
i-alam,  however,  is  octagonal,  with  small  towers  at  the 
angles,  and  is,  besides,  a much  larger  building,  the  inside 
diameter  being  56  feet,  and  the  outer  diameter  76  feet.  But 
the  Multan  tomb  is  built  entirely  of  brick,  while  the  Delhi 
tomb  is  built  throughout  of  stone,  and  is  ornamented  with 
white  marble. 

The  tomb  of  Tughlak  Shah  is  situated  outside  the 
southern  wall  of  Tughlakabad,  in  the  midst  of  the  artificial 
lake  already  described,  and  is  surrounded  by  a pentagonal  out- 
work, which  is  connected  with  the  fortress  by  a causeway 
600  feet  in  length,  supported  on  27  arches.  The  stern  beauty 
and  massive  strength  of  this  tomb  have  justly  elicited  the 
following  warm  praises  of  Mr.  Eergusson  :*  “ The  sloping 
walls  and  almost  Egyptian  solidity  of  this  Mausoleum,  com- 
bined with  the  bold  and  massive  towers  of  the  fortification 
that  surround  it,  form  a picture  of  a warrior’s  tomb  un- 
rivalled anywhere.”  In  this  praise  I heartily  concur,  with 
only  one  reservation  in  favour  of  the  situation  of  the  Multan 
tomb,  which,  besides  being  both  larger  and  loftier,  is  placed 
on  the  very  top  of  the  fort  close  to  the  northern  wall. 

In  plan  the  Delhi  tomb  is  a square  of  38|  feet  interior 
and  6T|  feet  exterior  dimensions.  The  outer  walls  are  38-|- 
feet  in  height  to  the  top  of  the  battlement,  with  a slope  of 

* Hand-book  of  Architecture,  I. — 434. 



2333  inches  per  foot.  At  this  rate  the  whole  slope  is  7| 
feet  in  38^  feet.  The  walls  at  base  are  11^  feet  thick,  and 
at  top  only  4 feet,  but  the  projecting  mouldings  of  the  in- 
terior increase  the  thickness  of  wall  at  the  springing  of  the 
dome  to  about  6 or  7 feet,  or  perhaps  more,  for  I had  no 
means  of  making  measurements  so  high  up.  The  diameter 
of  the  dome  is  about  34  feet  inside  and  about  44  feet  out- 
side, with  a height  of  20  feet.  The  whole  height  of  the 
tomb  to  the  top  of  the  dome  is  70  feet,  and  to  the  top  of  the 
pinnacle  about  80  feet. 

Each  of  the  four  sides  has  a lofty  doorway  in  the  middle, 
24  feet  in  height,  with  a pointed  liorse-slioe  arch  fretted  on 
the  outer  edge.  There  is  a smaller  doorway,  only  5 feet  10 
inches  in  width,  hut  of  the  same  form,  in  the  middle  of  each 
of  the  great  entrances,  the  archway  being  filled  with  a white 
marble  lattice  screen  of  hold  pattern.  The  decoration  of  the 
exterior  depends  chiefly  on  difference  of  colour,  which  is 
effected  by  the  free  use  of  hands  and  borders  of  white  marble, 
writh  a few  panels  of  black  marble,  on  the  large  sloping  sur- 
faces of  red-stone.  The  liorse-slioe  arches  are  of  wdiite  mar- 
ble, and  a broad  band  of  the  same  goes  completely  round  the 
building  at  the  springing  of  the  arches.  Another  broad  band 
of  white  marble  in  upright  slabs,  4 feet  in  height,  goes  all 
round  the  dome  just  above  its  springing.  The  present  effect 
of  this  mixture  of  colours  is  certainly  pleasing,  but  I believe 
that  much  of  its  beauty  is  due  to  the  mellowing  hand  of 
time,  which  has  softened  the  crude  redness  of  the  sand-stone, 
as  well  as  the  dazzling  whiteness  of  the  marble.  The  building 
itself  is  in  very  good  order,  but  the  whole  interior  of  the 
little  fort  in  which  it  stands  is  filled  with  filthy  hovels  and 
dirty  people,  and  the  place  reeks  with  ordure  of  every 
description.  I would  strongly  recommend  that  the  whole  of 
these  hovels  should  be  removed,  and  the  interior  of  the  fort 
cleaned.*  The  people  might  be  located  in  Tughlakabad,  only 
200  yards  to  the  north,  where  there  are  hundreds  of  domed- 
rooms  under  the  ramparts,  all  in  good  repair  and  quite 

Inside  the  Mausoleum  there  are  three  tombs,  which  are 
said  to  be  those  of  Tughluk  Shah  and  his  Queen,  and  their 

* This  removal  has  since  been  carried  into  effect  by  the  late  able  and  energetic  Com- 
missioner, Colonel  G.  W.  Hamilton. 



son  Juna-Khan,  who  took  the  name  of  Muhammad  when  he 
ascended  the  throne.  This  Prince  was  the  most  accomplished 
of  all  the  Patlian  Sovereigns  of  India ; but  he  was  also  the 
most  inhumanly  cruel  and  most  madly  tyrannical  of  them  all. 
His  cruelties  were  witnessed  by  his  cousin  and  successor  Piruz 
Tughlak,  who  adopted  one  of  the  most  curious  expedients 
which  the  mind  of  man  has  ever  conceived  for  obtaining  the 
pardon  of  his  tyrannical  predecessor.  I quote  the  words  of 
Piruz  himself,  as  given  by  Perishta,*  from  the  inscriptions  on 
the  Great  Mosque  of  Piruzabad.  “ I have  also  taken  pains 
to  discover  the  surviving  relations  of  all  persons  who  suffered 
from  the  wrath  of  my  late  Lord  and  Master  Muhammad 
Tughlak , and,  having  pensioned  and  provided  for  them, 
have  caused  them  to  grant  their  full  pardon  and  forgiveness 
to  that  Prince  in  the  presence  of  the  holy  and  learned  men 
of  this  age,  whose  signatures  and  seals,  as  witnesses,  are 
affixed  to  the  documents,  the  whole  of  which,  as  far  as  lay 
in  my  power,  have  been  procured  and  put  into  a box,  and 
deposited  in  the  vault  in  which  Muhammad  Tughlak  is  en- 
tombed.”! This  strange  device  of  placing  the  vouchers  in 
the  tomb  ready  for  the  dead  man’s  hand  to  pick  up  at  the  last 
day  is  as  hold  as  it  is  original.  It  would  he  interesting  to  read 
some  of  these  documents,  which  are,  in  all  probability,  still 
quite  safe,  as  all  the  tombs  appear  to  he  in  the  most  perfect 

Another  work  attributed  to  Muhammad  Tughlak  is  the 
small  detached  fort  of  Adilabad  or  Muhammadahad,  near 
the  south-east  corner  of  Tughlakabad,  with  which  it  was 
once  connected  by  a double  wall  along  the  causeway  which 
crosses  the  intervening  low  ground.  This  fort  is  built  in  the 
same  style  as  Tughlakabad,  but  it  is  a very  small  place,  as  the 
exterior  line  of  works  is  not  more  than  half  a mile  in  circuit. 

But  the  greatest  work  of  Muhammad  Tughlak  was  the 
fortification  of  the  extensive  suburbs  of  Delhi,  lying  between 

* Briggs,  I — 464. 

f The  same  statement  is  made  by  Firuz  in  his  autobiography — “ Under  the  guidance 
of  the  Almighty,  I arranged  that  the  heirs  of  those  persons  who  had  been  executed  in  the 
reign  of  my  late  lord  and  patron  Sultan  Muhammad  Shah,  and  those  who  had  been 
deprived  of  a limb,  nose,  eye,  hand,  or  foot,  should  be  reconciled  to  the  late  Sultan,  and 
be  appeased  with  gifts,  so  that  they  executed  deeds  declaring  their  satisfaction,  duly  attested 
by  witnesses.  These  deeds  were  put  into  a chest,  which  was  placed  in  the  Dar-ul-dm&n  at 
the  head  of  the  tomb  of  the  late  Sultan  in  the  hope  that  God,  in  His  great  clemency,  would 
show  mercy  to  my  late  friend  and  patron,  and  make  those  persons  feel  reconciled  to  him. — 
See  Elliot’s  Muhammadan  Historians  III.,  385. — Fu.t'&h&t-i-Firuz  Shdhi. 



the  Hindu  fort  of  Hai  Pitliora  and  the  Musalman  Citadel 
of  Siri.  These  suburbs  had  been  plundered  by  the  Moguls 
in  the  early  part  of  the  reign  of  Ala-uddin,  and  their  un- 
protected state  fully  justified  the  vast  outlay  which  the  King 
must  have  incurred  upon  their  defences.  The  north-west 
wall  is  If  mile  in  length,  the  east  wall  is  If  mile,  and  the 
south  wall  is  2 miles  ; the  whole  length  of  the  walls  being 
just  5 miles,  or  somewhat  more  than  the  circuit  of  the  fort 
of  Rai  Pitliora.  A considerable  portion  of  the  south  wall 
still  exists ; hut  the  east  and  north-west  walls  have  been 
pulled  down,  and  are  now  only  traceable  by  their  ruins. 
Sharaf-uddin  states  that  Jah&n-panali  had  13  gates,  6 being 
to  the  north-west  and  7 to  the  south-west. 

Having  now  described  the  seven  forts  of  old  Delhi,  I will 
complete  the  account  with  a detail  of  the  number  of  gates 
in  each  of  the  forts,  which  together  make  up  the  total  of 
“ 52  gates,”  as  recorded  by  the  old  English  traveller  William 
Pinch,  and  as  preserved  by  the  people  down  to  the  present 
day  in  their  pithy  description  of  Sat-kila  Bdwan-Darwaza 
or  “ seven  forts  and  52  gates.” 


Ldllcot  of  Anting  Pal,  towards  Itai  Pitliora  ...  4 

Fort  of  Rai  Pithora,  and  Lalkot  outside  ...  10 

Total  of  Hindu  Dilli 
Siri  of  Ala-uddin 
Jahan-panah  of  Muhammad 

14  gates. 



Total  of  Musalman  Delhi 

.20  gates. 

Total  of  old  Delhi 
Citadel  of  ditto 

34  gates. 

Total  of  Tughlakabad 


Total  number 

52  gates. 

The  next  remains  in  point  of  antiquity  are  the  buildings 
of  Piruz  Tughlak,  who  devoted  the  greater  part  of  a long 
reign  of  nearly  40  years  (A.  D.  1351  to  1388)  to  the  com 
struction  of  numerous  works,  of  which  all  but  20  palaces, 
10  monumental  pillars,  and  5 tombs,  may  be  called  works 



of  real  public  utility.  Perhaps  the  most  useful  of  these 
works  was  the  canal  which  he  drew  from  the  west  bank  of 
the  Jumna  to  supply  his  new  Capital  of  Piruzabad  with 
water.  This  canal,  having  become  choked  from  neglect,  was- 
cleared  out  by  Ali  Mardan  Khan  in  the  reign  of  Shahjahan 
to  furnish  the  Mogul’s  new  Capital  with  water.  Having 
again  become  choked,  it  was  once  more  cleared  out  and 
improved  by  the  British  Government,  and  it  is  still  flowing 
through  modem  Delhi  under  the  name  of  the  Western 
Jumna  Canal. 

But  the  most  extensive  work  of  Piruz  was  the  building 
of  the  new  city  of  Mruzabad,  with  its  two  palaces  of  KushaJc 
Firuzabad  and  Kushak  Shikar.  Major  Lewis  has  published 
much  interesting  information  regarding  this  new  city  from 
the  Persian  of  Shams-i-Sirdj  AJif,  who  was  contemporary 
with  the  latter  end  of  this  Emperor’s  reign.  The  new  city 
was  begun  in  the  year  A.  H.  755,  or  A.  D.  1354.  It  ex- 
tended from  the  fort  of  Indrpat  to  the  Kushak  Shikar , or, 
hunting  palace,  a length  of  five  kos.  Now  the  distance 
from  old  Delhi  is  said  to  be  also  five,  kos,  which  fixes  the 
position  of  the  Kushak  Shikar  approximately  on  the  low  range 
of  hills  to  the  north-west  of  the  modern  Shabjahanabad. 
But  the  exact  position  is  absolutely  determined  by  the  men- 
tion that  the  second  stone  pillar  from  Mirat  was  erected 
within  the  precincts  of  the  palace,  as  the  stone  pillar  is  now 
lying  in  five  pieces  on  the  top  of  the  hill  close  to  Hindu 
Kao’s  house.  Shams-i- Siraj  adds  that  the  whole  distance 
from  Indrpat  to  the  Kushak  Shikar  was  occupied  by  stone- 
houses,  mosques,  and  bazars,  but  as  the  limits  noted  above 
include  the  whole  of  the  modern  Shalijahanabad,  it  is  very 
improbable  that  the  entire  space  was  actually  occupied.  It 
is  certain,  however,  that  some  considerable  portion  of  the 
site  of  Shabjahanabad  was  well  populated  as  the  Kdla  Masjid , 
which  was  built  in  Piruz’s  reign,  is  situated  at  some  distance 
within  the  Turkoman  Gate  of  the  present  city.  But  even  if 
thinly  inhabited,  the  population  of  Piruzabad  could  not  have 
been  less  than  that  of  Shahjahanabad,  as  it  was  more  than 
double  its  size.  The  number  of  inhabitants  would,  therefore,., 
have  been  about  150,000  ; and  if  we  add  100,000  more  for 
the  population  of  old  Delhi,  the  total  number  of  inhabitants 
in  the  Indian  Metropolis  during  the  reign  of  Piruz  Shah, 
must  have  amounted,  to  one  quarter  of  a.  million. 



The  palace  of  Firuzabad,  which  formed  also  the  citadel 
of  the  new  city,  was  strongly  fortified  with  massive  stone 
walls  and  towers  of  more  than  Egyptian  slope.  One  of  the 
gateways,  which  still  exists,  between  the  well  known  Ldl 
Darwdzci  and  Firuz  Shah’s  Pillar,  is  a fine  specimen  of  this 
bold,  but  rude,  architecture.  I believe,  however,  that  we 
now  see  these  old  buildings  under  very  favourable  circum- 
stances, as  time  has  most  effectually  stripped  off  all  the 
flaring  and  gaudily  coloured  plaster  which  the  taste  of  those 
days  so  much  delighted  in.  I found  it  impossible  to  trace 
the  exact  size  or  shape  of  Firuz  Shah’s  Citadel,  as  many  of 
the  parts  in  the  best  preservation  appear  to  me  to  be  of 
decidedly  later  date.  Thus  the  Kabuli  Gate  or  Ldl  Luncdza^ 
as  it  is  now  called  from  its  red  colour,  is  of  quite  a different 
style  of  architecture,  and  belongs,  as  I believe,  to  the  time 
of  Shir  Shah  of  whose  city  it  formed  the  northern  or  Kabul 
Gate.  From  what  I was  able  to  trace,  my  opinion  is  that 
Firuz  Shah’s  palace  was  much  smaller  than  the  palace  of 
Shah] alum  in  the  modern  city. 

A characteristic  and  favourable  specimen  of  the  archi- 
tecture of  this  age  is  the  Kdla  Masjid,  or  “ Black  Mosque,” 
which  is  situated  inside  the  present  city,  at  a short  distance 
from  the  Turkoman  Gate.  A detailed  account  of  this  building 
has  been  published  by  Messrs.  Lewis  and  Cope.*  According 
to  these  authors,  the  original  name  was  most  probably  the 
Kaldn  Masjid  or  “ Great  Mosque.”  This  is  no  doubt 
correct,  as,  when  I first  visited  this  Mosque  in  February  1838, 
the  people  in  charge  called  it  by  that  name.  The  common 
name,  however,  is  the  Kdla  Masjid.  But  I am  quite 
satisfied  that  this  could  not  have  been  the  original  name,  as 
the  taste  of  those  days  would  most  assuredly  have  covered 
the  whole  building  with  a coating  of  coloured  plaster.  The 
present  name  of  Kdla  Masjid  could  not  therefore  have  been 
given  to  it  until  most  of  the  plaster  had  fallen  off,  and  the 
bare  walls  of  dark-grey  quartzose  sand-stone  had  become 

The  Kdla  Masjid  is  a single  room  71  feet  in  length  by 
11  feet  in  breadth,  with  two  rows  of  four  pillars  each  down  the 
centre,  and  one  row  of  coupled  pillars  along  the  front.  These 
columns  divide  the  whole  area  into  15  squares,  each  of  which 

* Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal,  1S17,  p.  577. 



is  covered  by  a small  dome,  the  central  dome  being  somewhat 
higher  than  the  others.  The  walls  are  six  feet  thick,  with 
three  openings  at  each  end,  closed  by  massive  red  stone 
lattice-work.  In  front  of  the  building  there  is  a small  open 
quadrangle,  of  the  same  dimensions  as  the  interior  of  the 
Mosque,  and  on  three  sides  of  the  quadrangle  there  are  clois- 
ters which  are  continued  round  the  Mosque  itself.  The  whole 
is  enclosed  by  an  outer  wall  5 feet  thick,  which  forms  an 
oblong  block  of  building  110  feet  in  length  by  120  feet  in 
breadth.  On  the  outside  the  building  consists  of  two  storeys, 
the  middle  of  the  lower  storey  being  a solid  mass,  which  forms 
the  floor  of  the  Masjid.  The  four  faces  of  the  lower  storey 
have  two  rows  of  small  rooms,  which  are  now  rented  to  petty 
shop-keepers.  This  is  the  invariable  practice  at  present,  and 
was,  no  doubt,  the  same  in  the  time  of  Tiruz,  as  the  money 
thus  obtained  always  formed  the  principal  revenue,  and  even- 
tually became  the  only  income  of  the  attendants  of  a Mosque. 
The  lower  storey  is  28  feet  in  height,  and  the  upper  storey  to 
the  top  of  the  battlements  is  38  feet,  making  a total  height 
of  66  feet.  The  four  angles  are  supported  by  small  round 
towers  with  sloping  walls  as  plain  and  bare  as  the  rest  of 
the  building.  The  entrance  to  the  upper  storey  is  reached  by 
a steep  flight  of  steps,  at  the  head  of  which,  but  outside  the 
general  mass  of  building,  is  a domed  ante-room  of  small 
dimensions.  The  walls  of  the  upper  storey  are  pierced  with  a 
row  of  arched  openings  which  correspond  in  number  and  size 
with  the  doorways  of  the  lower  storey.  These  were  once 
filled  with  bold  strong  lattice-work,  but  many  of  them  have 
been  built  up.  The  plain  but  massive  appearance  of  the  walls 
is  highly  suggestive  of  strength  and  solidity,  which  is  fully 
borne  out  by  the  excellent  state  of  preservation  of  this  old 
building  after  a lapse  of  nearly  five  centuries. 

The  small  fort  of  Indr  pat,  or  Purana  Kilah,  was  repaired 
by  the  Emperor  Humayun  in  A.  H.  910,  or  A.  I).  1533, 
and  re-named  by  him  Din-pandh  ; but  the  new  name  is  never 
used,  except  hy  pedantic  or  bigotted  Muhammadans.  Within 
a few  years,  or  about  A.  D.  1510  the  works  were  much  strength- 
ened by  Shir  Shah,  who  made  Indrpat  the  Citadel  of  his  new 
city  under  the  name  of  Sliirgarli,  by  which  it  is  now  very 
generally  known,  although  Pur  ana  Kilah,  or  “ the  old  Eort,” 
is  perhaps  the  most  common  appellation.  The  lofty  massive 
towers  and  solid  walls  of  this  fort  were  strengthened  by  a ditch 
which  once  communicated  with  the  Jumna.  Shirgarh  is, 



however,  but  a small  place  when  compared  with  the  mighty 
fortresses  of  liai  Bithora,  Siri,  and  Tughlakabad , the  whole 
circuit  of  its  walls  being  only  one  mile  and  one  furlong.  In 
shape  it  is  almost  rectangular,  being  3 furlongs  in  length  by 
1^  furlongs  in  breadth.  The  fort  had  four  gates,  one  in  the 
middle  of  each  face,  of  which  the  south-west  gate  alone  is 
now  open.  The  interior  is  almost  filled  with  Native  huts; 
but  towering  above  these  hovels  are  two  fine  remains  of  for- 
mer days,  a handsome  massive  Mosque,  generally  known  as 
the  Kila-Kona  Masjid,  and  a lofty  octagonal  building,  which 
is  still  called  Shir  Mandir , or  “ Shir’s  Palace.”  The  front  of 
the  Mosque  has  five  horse-shoe  arches,  and  is  decorated 
with  blue  tiles  and  marble.  The  roof  is  formed  of  low  flat- 
tened domes.  It  was  built  by  Shir  Shah  in  A.  H.  948,  or 
A.  D.  1541,  and  is  the  finest  existing  specimen  of  the 
architecture  of  the  Afghan  period. 

The  new  city  of  Shir  Shah  called  Delhi  Shirshali  ex- 
tended from  the  neighbourhood  of  Humayun’s  tomb  on  the 
south  to  Piruz  Shah’s  Kotila  on  the  north,  near  which  there 
still  exists  a fine  massive  gateway,  which  was  the  Kdbuli 
Darwdza  of  the  new  city.  It  is  now,  however,  always  called 
the  Ldl  Darwdza  or  “ red  gate.”  "William  Pinch,  who 
entered  Delhi  from  the  Agra  side  on  16th  January  1611, 
describes  the  city  as  being  two  kos  in  length  from  gate  to 
gate,  “ surrounded  by  a wall  which  has  been  strong,  but  is 
now  ruinous.”  The  value  of  Pinch’s  kos  is  determined  at 
rather  more  than  1|  mile,  by  his  mention  that  the  hunting 
seat  or  mole  (that  is,  Mahal  of  Piruz  Shah)  was  two  kos 
from  the  city.  Prom  the  Ldl  Darwdza  to  the  ruing  of  the 
Kushak  Shikar,  the  distance  is  3J  miles,  and  from  the  same 
point  to  Humayun’s  tomb  the  distance  is  exactly  3 miles. 
But  as  Purchas,  on  the  authority  of  other  English  travellers, 
states  that  Humayun’s  tomb  was  in  the  city  of  Shir  Shah 
Salim,  the  south  gate  of  the  city  must  have  been  somewhere 
beyond  the  tomb.  The  distance,  however,  could  not  have 
been  great,  as  Pinch  mentions  that  “ a short  way  from  Delhi 
is  a stone  bridge  of  11  arches,”  which  is  clearly  the  long 
massive  bridge  of  11  arches,  that  is  now  called  Bara  Bui  or 
the  “ Great  Bridge.”*  The  south  gate  of  Shir  Shah’s  city 

* Syad  Ahmed  writes  the  name  Barak  Palah,  or  the  “12  arches,”  and  states  that  the 
bridge  was  built  in  A.  H.  1021,  which  began  on  23rd  February  1612.  But  there  is  probably 
a mistake  of  one  year  in  this  date,  which,  I think,  should  be  A.  H.  1020,  or  A.  D.  1611. 
This  would  agree  with  Finch’s  date  of  16th  January  1611,  or  properly  1612,  according  to  our 
present  reckoning. 



must  therefore  have  been  somewhere  between  the  Bara  Bui 
and  Humayun’s  tomb.  The  east  wall  of  the  city  is  deter- 
mined by  the  line  of  the  high  bank  of  the  Jumna,  which 
formerly  ran  due  south  from  Eiruz  Shah’s  Kotila  towards 
Humayun’s  tomb.  On  the  west  the  boundary  line  of  the 
city  can  be  traced  along  the  bank  of  a torrent  bed,  which 
runs  southward  from  the  Ajmer  Gate  of  Shahjahanabad,  and 
parallel  to  the  old  course  of  the  Jumna,  at  a distance  of 
rather  more  than  1 mile.  The  whole  circuit  of  the  city  walls 
was  therefore  close  upon  9 miles,  or  nearly  double  that  of  the 
modern  Shahjahanabad. 

The  small  fort  of  Salimgarh  was  built  by  Salim  Shah, 
the  son  of  Shir  Shah,  in  A.  H.  953,  or  A.  D.  1546.  It  is 
situated  at  the  north  end  of  Shahjahan’s  Palace,  after  the 
building  of  which  it  was  used  only  as  a state  prison.  It  is 
not  quite  one  quarter  of  a mile  in  length,  and  the  whole  circuit 
of  its  walls  is  only  of  three  quarters  of  a mile.  It  stands 
on  an  island  close  to  the  west  bank  of  the  river,  and  with 
its  loftly  towel’s  and  massive  walls,  forms  a most  picturesque 
object  from  the  opposite  side  of  the  Jumna.  A bridge  of 
five  arches  was  built  in  front  of  the  South  Gate  by  Jahangir, 
after  whom  the  name  of  the  place  was  changed  to  Nurgarh 
according  to  Syad  Ahmad.  But  the  old  name  of  Salimgarh  has 
prevailed,  and  is  the  only  one  that  I have  ever  heard  used 
by  the  people,  either  educated  or  uneducated. 

The  tomb  of  Humayun  is  too  well  known  to  need  any 
detailed  description,  unless  illustrated  by  pictorial  represen- 
tations^ which  will  more  appropriately  accompany  my  pro- 
posed account  of  Mogul  architecture.  It  was  built  after 
the  Emperor’s  death  in  A.  H.  962,  or  A.  D.  1554,  by  his 
widow  Ilaji  Began.  It  is  therefore  the  earliest  specimen  of 
the  architecture  of  the  Mogul  dynasty.  The  exterior  form 
of  the  main  body  of  the  tomb  is  a square  with  the  corners 
ent  off,  on  an  octagon  with  four  long  and  four  short  faces, 
and  each  of  the  short  faces  forms  one  side  of  the  four 
octagonal  corner  towers.  The  dome  is  built  entirely  of  white 
marble,  the  rest  of  the  building  being  of  red  stand-stone, 
with  inlaid  ornaments  of  white  marble.  In  this  tomb  we  first 
see  towers  attached  to  the  four  angles  of  the  main  build- 
ing. It  is  true  that  these  towers  are  very  stout  and  massive, 
but  they  form  an  important  innovation  in  the  Muhammadan 
architecture  of  Northern  India,  which  was  gradually  improved 
and  developed,  until  it  culminated  in  the  graceful  Minars  of 


ARCnJEOLOGlCAL  It£K)TlT,  18G2-G3. 

the  Taj  Mahal.  The  intervening  links  are,  1st,  the  one-storeyed 
towers  of  Itimad-uddaolah’s  tomb  at  Agra  ; 2nd,  the  two- 
storeyed  Minars  of  the  gateway  of  Akbar’s  tomb  at  Sikandra  ; 
and  3rd,  the  three-storeyed  octagonal  Minars  of  Jahangir’s 
tomb  at  Labor.  In  all  these  specimens  the  Minars  are 
attached  to  the  main  building,  as  in  the  original  example  of 
Humayun’s  tomb.  But  in  the  Taj  Mahal  the  Minars  are 
placed  at  the  four  angles  of  the  square  terrace  or  plinth,  on 
which  the  tomb  is  raised,  an  arrangement  which  was  pro- 
bably copied  from  the  position  of  the  four  corner  towers  of 
the  platform  of  Shir  Shah’s  tomb  at  Sassaram.  Another 
innovation  observable  in  this  tomb  is  the  narrow-necked 
dome,  which  was  afterwards  adopted  in  all  the  Mogul 

The  citadel  or  palace  of  ShajaMndbad  was  begun  by  the 
Emperor  Sliahj&han  in  the  year  A.  H.  1048,  or  A.  D.  1638, 
but  the  new  city  was  not  commenced  until  10  years  later. 
The  circuit  of  the  walls  of  the  citadel  is  1-J  mile,  or  just  the 
same  as  that  of  the  old  citadel  of  Tughlakabad ; but  the  new 
city  is  considerably  larger  than  either  Tughlakabad  or  Rai 
Pithorcfs  Eort,  the  circuit  of  its  walls  being  5^  miles.  The 
citadel  has  two  gates,  named  the  Labor  and  Delhi  Gates.  The 
city  has  twelve  gates,  which  are  named  as  follows,  beginning 
from  the  north-east  gate  near  Salim garli,  which  is  now  called 
the  Calcutta  Gate,  because  it  leads  to  the  bridge-of-boats 
over  the  Jumna  on  the  line  of  the  high  road  to  Calcutta : 

1.  Calcutta  Gate  to  north-east. 

2.  Nigambad  Gate  to  north-east. 

3.  Kashmir  Gate  to  north. 

4.  Mori  Gate  to  north. 

5.  Kabul  Gate  to  west. 

G.  Labor  Gate  to  west. 

7.  Earash  Khana  to  south-west. 

8.  Ajmer  Gate  to  south-west. 

9.  Turkoman  Gate  to  south. 

10.  Delhi  Gate  to  south. 

11.  Khyrati  Gate  to  east. 

12.  Bajghat  to  east  on  river  face. 

The  original  round  towers  of  the  city  defences  were 
much  enlarged  and  altered  into  angular  bastions  by  the 
British  Government  early  in  the  present  century,  and  at  the 
same  time  a regular  glacis  was  formed  all  round  the  land  faces 



of  the  fortress.  These  new  works  added  considerably  to  the 
strength  of  the  fortifications,  as  we  found,  to  our  cost,  in  the 
mutiny  of  1857.  The  two  principal  streets,  forming  nearly 
a right  angle,  ran  from  the  Labor  and  Delhi  Gates  of  the 
Citadel  to  the  Labor  and  Delhi  Gates  of  the  city.  The  two 
principal  buildings  in  the  city  are  the  Jama  Masjid  and  the 
Zinat  Masjid.  The  former  was  built  by  Shahjalian  in  A.  D. 
1648,  and  is  one  of  the  largest  and  finest  Mosques  in  India. 
The  later  was  built  by  Zinat-un-nissa , the  daughter  of 
Aurangzib,  in  A.  D.  1710,  and  is  a favorable  specimen  of  the 
later  style  of  Mogul  architecture.  Both  of  these  buildings 
will  be  described  more  fully  hereafter  in  my  proposed  histori- 
cal account  of  the  Muhammadan  architecture  of  Northern 

The  Citadel  of  Shahjahanabad,  which  contained  the 
Emperor’s  palace,  and  the  two  celebrated  open  halls  or  courts 
called  the  Dewdn-i-dm  and  the  Deivan-i-lchas,  is  too  well 
known  to  require  any  description  in  this  place ; but  it  will 
be  duly  considered  hereafter  in  my  account  of  the  archi- 
tecture of  Shahjahan’s  reign.  I will,  therefore,  confine  my 
remarks  at  present  to  the  short  account  of  the  two  life-size 
statues  of  elephants  and  their  riders  that  have  lately  been 
discovered,  and  which,  as  we  learn  frpm  Thevenot  and 
Bernier,  once  stood  outside  the  Delhi  Gate  of  the  Citadel. 

The  earliest  notice  is  that  by  Bernier  in  his  description 
of  Delhi,  written  on  1st  July  1663:  “ I find  nothing  re- 

markable at  the  entry  (of  the  palace),  but  two  great  elephants 
of  stone,  which  are  on  the  two  sides  of  one  of  the  gates. 
Upon  one  of  them  is  the  statue  of  Jamel,  the  famous  Baja 
of  Chitor,  and  upon  the  other  that  of  Patta,  his  brother. 
These  are  those  two  gallant  men  that,  together  with  their 
mother,  who  was  yet  braver  than  they,  cut  out  so  much  work 
for  Eckbar , and  who  in  the  sieges  of  towns,  which  they 
maintained  against  him,  gave  such  extraordinary  proofs  of 
their  generosity,  that  at  length  they  would  rather  be  killed  in 
the  out-falls  with  their  mother  than  submit : and  for  this 
gallantry  it  is  that  even  their  enemies  thought  them  worthy 
to  have  these  statues  erected  for  them.  These  two  great 
elephants,  together  with  the  two  resolute  men  sitting  on  them, 
do,  at  the  first  entry  into  this  fortress,  make  an  impression 
of  I know  not  what  greatness  and  awful  terror.”  Thevenot, 
who  was  at  Delhi  in  1667,  corroborates  Bernier's  account  of 

e 2 



these  statues ; but  as  he  knew  that  Bernier  intended  to  pub- 
lish a description  of  Delhi,  he  merely  notices  the  principal 
objects,  of  which  the  first  are,  “ the  two  elephants  at  the 
entry  which  carry  two  warriors .” 

The  next  reference  that  I have  been  able  to  find  is  by 
Lieutenant  Franklin,  who  visited  Delhi  in  1793.  Stimulated 
by  Bernier’s  account,  he  made  enquiries  after  the  statues,  and 
was  informed  that  “ they  were  removed  by  order  of  Aurangzib 
as  savoring  too  much  of  idolatry,  and  he  enclosed  the  place 
where  they  stood  with  a screen  of  red  stone,  which  has  dis- 
figured the  entrance  of  the  palace.”* 

The  romantic  account  of  Bernier  did  not  escape  the 
notice  of  the  enthusiastic  historian  of  the  Bajputs,  who,  after 
quoting  the  passage  given  above,  adds,f  that  “ the  conqueror 
of  Chitor  evinced  an  exalted  sense,  not  only  of  the  value  of  his 
conquest,  but  of  the  merits  of  his  foes,  in  erecting  statues 
to  the  names  of  Jaymal  and  JPattci  at  the  most  conspicuous 
entrance  of  his  palace  at  Delhi.”  Prom  Colonel  Tod  also  we 
learn  that  Jaymal  was  a Mertiya  Udthor  of  Bednor,  and  that 
JPatta  was  the  Chief  of  the  Jagdioat  Sisodiyas  of  Salumbra, 
both  being  feudatories  of  Udaypur.  Their  names,  he  says, 
are  as  household  words  inseparable  in  Mewar,  and  will  be 
honoured  while  the.llajput  retains  a shred  of  his  inheritance, 
or  a spark  of  his  ancient  recollections.”  On  Akbar’s 
advance  to  Chitor,  the  spiritless  Bana  Uday  Sing  retired  to 
the  western  jungles,  and  the  defence  of  the  capital  of  the 
Sisodyas  was  left  to  the  Bathor  Governor  Jaymal.  But  the 
warlike  spirit  of  the  Sisodiyas  was  roused  by  the  mother  of 
the  young  Chief  of  Salumbra,  who  “ commanded  him  to  put 
on  the  saffron  robe  and  to  die  for  Chitor.”  Patta  was  then 
only  sixteen  years  old,  and  had  lately  married ; but  to  check 
any  compunctious  reluctance  which  he  might  feel  in  leaving 
his  bride,  the  heroic  mother  armed  the  young  wife  as  well  as 
herself,  and  “with  her  descended  the  rock,  and  the  defenders 
of  Chitor  saw  her  fall,  fighting  by  the  side  of  her  Amazonian 
mother.”  The  siege  still  continued,  but  without  making  any 
progress,  when,  through  some  unfortunate  delay  in  the 
springing  of  one  of  their  mines,  the  assailants  suffered  a 
severe  loss,  and  fled  in  disorder  to  their  camp.  The  operations 

* Asiatic  Researches,  IV. — 116. 
t Rajasthan,  I — 328. 



of  the  siege  had  now  to  he  re-commenced,  when  a lucky 
shot  deprived  the  Rajputs  of  their  leader.  “ Other  mines,” 
says  Eerishta,*  “ were  directed  to  he  constructed,  and  as  the 
works  were  in  progress,  the  King  while  in  the  batteries 
observed  Jaymal,  the  Governor  of  the  place,  superintending 
the  repairs  of  the  breaches,  and  giving  his  orders  by  torch- 
light. Akbar,  seizing  a matchlock  from  one  of  his  atten- 
dants, fired  at  him,  and  was  so  fortunate  as  to  lodge  the  ball 
in  Jaymal’s  forehead.  The  spirit  of  the  besieged  fell  with 
their  Governor,  and,  in  their  dispair,  they  performed  the 
ceremony  of  the  Johar,  and  putting  their  wives  and  children 
to  death,  burned  them  with  the  corpse  of  their  Chief  on  a 
funeral  pile.”  Akbar  then  entered  the  fort,  and  after  a 
slight  opposition,  the  capital  of  the  Sisodiyas,  for  the  third 
time,  was  in  the  hands  of  the  Musalmans. 

It  remains  now  to  consider  the  value  of  the  evidence 
recorded  in  the  above  statements.  In  the  first  place,  then, 
with  respect  to  the  statues,  I feel  quite  satisfied  with  the 
testimony  of  Bernier.  As  the  physician  and  companion  of 
Danishmand  Khan , a highly  respectable  nobleman  of 
Aurangzib’s  Court,  he  was  most  in  the  favorable  position  for 
obtaining  accurate  information  regarding  the  history  of  Akbar 
and  his  successors.  I accept,  therefore,  without  any 
hesitation,  the  account  of  Bernier  that  the  statues  were 
those  of  Jaymal  and  Patta,  the  two  Rajput  heroes  who 
defended  Chitor  against  Akbar.  Both  statues  as  I have 
already  pointed  out,  are  those  of  Hindus,  as  their  dresses 
open  over  the  right  breast.  Admitting  this  much,  I am  like- 
wise prepared  to  allow  that  the  two  statues  must  have  been 
made  by  Akbar,  as  is  also  stated  by  Bernier.  But,  as  the 
building  of  Shahjahanabad  was  not  begun  until  seventy 
years  after  the  siege  of  Chitor,  it  is  absolutely  certain  that 
Akbar  could  not  have  erected  the  statues  in  front  of  the  gate 
of  the  Delhi  Palace,  where  they  were  seen  by  Bernier  and 
Thcvcnot.  What,  then,  was  their  original  site  ? This  I be- 
lieve to  have  been  the  fort  of  Agra  in  front  of  the  river  gate. 

In  his  account  of  the  city  of  Agra,  Abul  Eazl,f  the 
Minister  of  Akbar,  states  that  “His  Majesty  has  erected  a fort 
“of  red  stone,  the  like  of  which  no  traveller  has  ever  beheld.” 

* Briggs,  11—231. 
f Ain  Akbari,  II — 36. 



“ At  the  eastern  gate  are  carved  in  stone  two  elephants  with 
their  riders,  of  exquisite  workmanship.”  The  eastern  gate 
of  the  fort  of  Agra  is  the  river  gate,  in  front  of  which  the 
two  statues  most  probably  remained  undisturbed  until  the 
reign  of  Shahjahan,  who,  as  I presume,  must  have  removed 
them  to  Delhi  to  adorn  his  new  capital  of  Shahjahanabad. 
It  is  scarcely  possible  that  Jahangir  could  have  removed  them 
to  Delhi ; hut,  if  he  did  so,  they  would  have  been  placed  in 
front  of  the  gate  of  Salimgarh,  to  which  he  added  a bridge, 
at  the  same  time  changing  the  name  of  the  place  to  Nurgarli, 
after  his  own  title  of  Nur-uddin. 

I have  been  disappointed  in  not  finding  any  mention 
of  these  elephant  statues  in  the  accounts  of  our  early  English 
travellers.  Captain  Hawkins  and  William  Einch  both  visited 
Agra  in  the  beginning  of  Jahangir’s  reign.  The  former 
attended  the  Boyal  Darbar  in  the  Agra  Eort  regularly  for 
two  years,  and  describes  minutely  the  King’s  daily  occupa- 
tions, which,  according  to  William  Einch,  included  the  wit- 
nessing of  animal  fights  on  every  day  except  Sunday  and  of 
executions  on  every  Tuesday.  Both  the  fights  and  the  execu- 
tions took  place  in  a courtyard,  or  out- work,  in  front  of  the 
river  gate.  This  gate  is  described  by  Einch  as  follows  : “ The 

fourth  gate  is  to  the  river  called  the  Dursane  (Darsan  Dar- 
waza , or  “ Gate  of  Sights”)  leading  to  a fair  court,  extending 
along  the  river,  where  the  King  looks  out  every  morning  at 
sunrising.*  * Bight  under  this  place  is  a kind  of  scaffold,  on 
which  the  Nobles  stand.*  * Here,  likewise,  the  King  comes 
every  day  at  noon  to  see  the  Tumdsha  (shows)  or  fighting 
with  elephants,  lions,  and  buffaloes,  and  killing  of  deer  by 
leopards.*  * Tuesdays  are  peculiarly  the  days  of  blood,  both 
for  fighting  beasts  and  killing  men,  as  on  that  day  the  King 
sits  in  judgment,  and  sees  it  put  in  execution.”  I can  only 
account  for  the  silence  of  Einch  and  Hawkins  by  supposing 
that  they  had  never  seen  these  two  remarkable  elephants 
with  their  warrior  riders.  This,  indeed,  is  likely  enough,  for 
the  principal  gate  near  the  city,  by  which  they  would  have 
entered  the  fort,  is  on  the  western  side,  and  unless  they  had 
passed  right  through  the  fort,  they  could  not  possibly  have 
seen  the  statues.  There  was  formerly  no  road  along  the 
bank  of  the  river,  and  no  one  would  think  of  passing  in  that 
direction  without  some  special  reason.  No  doubt  the  statues 
might  have  been  seen  from  the  opposite  bank  of  the  river, 



but  as  our  travellers  bad  no  call  to  go  there,  they  probably 
never  went.  Both  of  them  came  to  Agra  from  Surat,  and 
approached  the  fort  on  the  south  side ; and  Pinch  left  Agra  by 
the  Delhi  Boad  via  Mathura,  without  crossing  the  river,  while 
Hawkins  returned  to  Surat.  Had  Pinch  seen  the  statues, 
I feel  satisfied  that  he  would  have  mentioned  them,  as  he 
takes  notice  of  the  elephant  statue  in  front  of  the  Ildtlii 
JPaur , or  “ Elephant  Gate,”  of  the  Gwalior  Port. 

With  regard  to  Akbar’s  object  in  setting  up  these 
statues,  I differ  altogether  from  Bernier  and  Tod.  Speaking 
of  the  heroes  Jaymal  and  JPatta , the  former  says  that  “ even 
their  enemies  thought  them  worthy  to  have  these  statues 
erected  to  them.”  This  is  somewhat  amplified  by  Tod,  who 
says  that  Akbar  “ evinced  an  exalted  sense,  not  only  of  the 
value  of  his  conquest,  but  of  the  merits  of  his  foes  in 
erecting  statues  to  the  names  of  Jaymal  and  Patta.”  Here 
we  see  that  both  Bernier  and  Tod  were  of  opinion  that  these 
statues  were  erected  by  Akbar  in  honour  of  his  enemies,  the 
two  Bajput  heroes  of  Chitor.  But  when  we  remember  that 
Akbar  prided  himself  on  having  killed  J aymal  with  his  own 
hand ; that  he  gave  the  name  of  Durust  Anddz,  or  “ true- 
shooter,”  to  his  matchlock,  and  that  both  his  Minister  Abul 
Pazl  and  his  son  Jahangir  make  much  boasting  of  the 
Emperor’s  lucky  shot,  the  more  natural  conclusion  is  that  the 
statues  were  erected  in  honour  of  Akbar  himself.  Had  they 
been  set  up  in  honour  of  his  gallant  foes,  the  fact  would 
most  assuredly  have  been  commemorated  in  their  loudest 
voice  by  the  Bajput  bards;  but  so  far  was  this  from  being 
the  case;  that  Colonel  Tod  was  entirely  indebted  to  Bernier 
for  his  knowledge  of  their  existence. 

Again,  when  I remember  that  the  same  Akbar  assumed 
the  title  of  Ghdzi  (or  warrior  for  the  faith)  after  putting  to 
death  with  his  own  hand  in  cold  blood  his  able,  gallant,  and 
wounded  antagonist  Himu,  I cannot  believe  that  he  would 
afterwards  erect  statues  in  honour  of  any  infidel  Hindus, 
however  noble  in  blood,  or  gallant  in  the  field.  When  I 
recollect,  also,  the  position  that  the  statues  occupied,  one  on 
each  side  of  the  eastern  gateway  of  the  Agra  fort,  I cannot 
help  feeling  that  they  stood,  like  the  two  horsemen  at  the 
gate  of  the  Horse  Guards  in  London,  as  sentinels  at  the  gate 
of  their  imperial  foe,  to  do  honour  to  their  conqueror. 
Admitting  his  view  to  be  correct,  I can  understand  why 



Shahjahan  removed  them  to  Dcllii  to  occupy  the  same  position 
at  the  gate  of  liis  new  citadel.  Under  the  same  view  I can 
also  understand  why  they  were  spared  for  a time  by  the  bigotted 
Aurangzib.  On  the  other  hand,  if  we  suppose  with  Bernier 
and  Tod  that  the  statues  were  set  up  in  honour  of  the  two 
Rajput  warriors,  their  re-erection  by  Shahjahan  is  to  me  quite 

But  the  question  of  Akbar’s  intention,  whether  it  was  to 
do  honour  to  his  foes  or  to  himself,  is  one  of  comparatively 
little  moment.  To  us  the  statues  are  simply  valuable  as  works 
of  art,  as  they  are,  perhaps,  the  only  portrait  statues  that 
have  been  executed  in  India  for  many  centuries.  They  are 
made  of  red  sand-stone,  and  are  of  life-size,  while  the  huge 
elephants  on  which  they  sit  arc  of  black  marble,  and  the  hous- 
ings are  decorated  with  white  and  yellow  marbles.  On  these 
grounds  I conclude  that  the  dresses  and  turbans  of  the 
Rajput  Chiefs  were  coloured,  while  the  faces  and  hands  were 
most  probably  left  of  the  natural  redish  brown  colour  of  the 
sand-stone.  "When  set  up  again  in  the  Delhi  Garden,  I have 
no  doubt  that  they  will  command  as  much  attention  and  ad- 
miration from  our  own  countrymen  as  they  did  two  hundred 
years  ago  from  the  enthusiastic  Erenchman  Bernier. 

There  are  many  other  remains  at  Delhi  that  are  both 
beautiful  and  interesting,  but  as  their  age  and  origin  are  well 
known,  they  will  naturally  form  a part  of  my  proposed 
account  of  the  Muhammadan  architecture  of  Northern  India. 
Such  are  the  Zinat  Masjid , more  commonly  called  the  Kudri 
Masjid,  or  “ Maiden’s  Mosque,”  because  built  by  Zinat-un- 
nissa,  the  virgin  daughter  of  Aurangzib;'*  the  Kashmiri 
Masjid,  and  the  Begam  Masjid  in  the  city,  and  the  tombs  of 
JalidnCird  Begam  and  Zib-un-nissa,  the  sister  and  daughter  of 
Aurangzib,  outside  the  city.  I will  only  notice  here  a grave 
mistake  made  by  Mrs.  Colin  Mackenzie  in  her  account  of  the 
epitaph  on  Jahdndra’s  tomb.  The  marginal  inscription 
records  the  name  of  “ the  perishable  Eakir,  Jahandrd  Begam, 
the  daughter  of  Shahjahan,  and  the  disciple  of  the  saints  of 
Chist  A.  EL  1091  (or  A.  D.  1682).”  The  holy  men  here 
mentioned  arc  the  Muhammadan  saints  of  the  well  known 
family  of  Chist i,  of  whom  famous  shrines  exist  at  Ajmer, 

* The  people  have  a tradition  that  Zinat-un-nissa  demanded  the  amount  of  her  dowry  - 
from  her  father,  and  spent  it  in  building  tins  Mosque,  instead  of  marrying. 



Eatehpur — Sikri,  Thanesar,  and  Kasur.  This  notorious 
Muhammadan  name  is  changed  by  Mrs.  Mackenzie  as  follows  : 
“ the  humble,  the  transitory  Jahanara  was  a disciple  of  the 
holy  men  of  Christ,  supposed  to  he  Roman  Priests.”* 
Jahanara  was  the  builder  of  the  Jama  Masjid  at  Agra,  and 
has  always  been  considered  a most  devout  follower  of 
Muhammad,  Her  name  is  still  held  in  much  veneration 
in  Delhi  for  her  numerous  charities. 


In  the  Brahmanical  city  of  Mathura,  in  A.  D.  634,  the 
temples  of  the  gods  were  reckoned  by  II wen  Thsang  at  five 
only,  while  the  Buddhist  monasteries  amounted  to  20,  with 
2,000  resident  monks.  The  number  of  Stupas  and  other 
Buddhist  monuments  was  also  very  great,  there  being  no  less 
than  seven  towers,  containing  relics  of  the  principal  disciples 
of  Buddha.  The  King  and  his  ministers  were  zealous  Bud- 
dhists, and  the  three  great  fasts  of  the  year  were  celebrated 
with  much  pomp  and  ceremony,  at  which  times  the  people 
flocked  eagerly  to  make  their  offerings  to  the  holy  Stupas 
containing  the  relics  of  Buddha’s  disciples.  Each  of  them, 
says  Hwen  Thsang,  paid  a special  visit  to  the  statue  of  the 
Bodhistawa  whom  he  regarded  as  the  founder  of  his  own 
school.  Thus  the  followers  of  the  Abiclharma , or  transcen- 
dental doctrines  made  their  offerings  to  Sdriputrci ; they  who 
practised  Samddhi  or  meditation,  to  Mudgalaputra  ; the 
followers  of  the  Sautrdntikas,  or  aphorisms,  to  Burva  Mai- 
treyani  )Putra  ; they  who  adhered  to  the  Vinaya , or  disci- 
pline, to  JJpdli;  the  Bhikshunis  or  Nuns,  to  Ananta ; the 
Anupdsampannas , or  novices,  to  Bdhula  (the  son  of  Buddha); 
and  they  who  studied  the  Mahaydna,  or  “ Greater  means  of 
advancement,”  to  the  great  Bodhisatwa  Manju  Sri  or 
Avalokiteswara , who  plays  such  a conspicuous  part  in  later 
Buddhism.  But  notwithstanding  this  apparently  flourishing 
condition  of  Buddhism,  it  is  certain  that  the  zeal  of  the 
people  of  Mathura  must  have  lessened  considerably  since 
A.  D.  400,  when  Ea  Hian  reckoned  the  body  of  monks  in 

* Delhi,  the  city  of  the  Great  Mogal,  2nd  edition,  p.  51.  I presume  that  this  curious 
mistake  is  due  to  the  English  printer’s  correction  of  Sir  W.  Sleeman’s  translation,  Rambles, 
II.,  270,  where  Christ  is  an  evident  misprint  for  Ckist,  as  Sleeman  was  a good  scholar.  It  is 
curious  that  the  same  insertion  of  the  letter  r is  made  in  this  name  in  the  travels  of  another 
lady,  “ Tour  in  Upper  Provinces  of  Hindustan  by  A.  D,”  where  she  speaks,  or  is  made  to 
speak  by  the  English  compositor,  of  “the  Mausoleum  of  Christie  at  Futtcypoor  Siccra.” 



the  20  monasteries  to  he  3,000,  or  just  one-half  more  than 
their  number  at  the  time  of  Hwen  Thsang’s  visit  in  A.  D. 

Pa  Ilian  and  his  companions  halted  at  Mathura  for  a 
whole  month,  during  which  time  “ the  clergy  held  a great 
assembly  and  discoursed  upon  the  law.”  After  the  meeting 
they  proceeded  to  the  Stupa  of  Sdriputra , to  which  they 
made  an  offering  of  all  sorts  of  perfumes,  and  before  which 
they  kept  lamps  burning  the  whole  night.  Hwen  Thsang 
describes  these  processions  as  carrying  flying  steamers  and 
stately  parasols,  while  the  mists  of  perfumes  and  the  showers 
of  flowers  darkened  the  sun  and  moon ! I can  easily  realize 
the  pomp  and  glittering  show  of  these  ceremonies  from  the 
similar  scenes  which  I have  witnessed  in  Barma.  I have  seen 
steamers  from  100  to  200  feet  in  length  carried  in  proces- 
sions, and  afterwards  suspended  from  pillars  or  holy  trees.  I 
have  beheld  hundreds  of  gorgeous  parasols  of  gold  and  silver 
brocade  flashing  in  the  sun  ; and  I have  witnessed  the  burning 
of  thousands  of  candles  day  after  day  before  the  great  Stupa 
of  Sliwe-Dagon  at  Rangoon,  which  is  devoutly  believed  to 
contain  eight  hairs  of  Buddha.  Before  this  sacred  tower,  I 
have  seen  flowers  and  fruits  offered  by  thousands  of  people, 
until  they  formed  large  heaps  around  it,  while  thousands  of 
votaries  still  came  thronging  in  with  their  offerings  of  candles, 
and  gold  leaf,  and  little  flags,  with  plantains  and  rice,  and 
flowers  of  all  kinds. 

Prom  these  accounts  of  the  Chinese  pilgrims  it  would 
appear  that  the  Buddhist  establishments  at  Mathura  must 
have  been  of  considerable  importance,  and  this  conclusion  is 
fully  borne  out  by  the  number  and  interest  of  the  recent 
discoveries.  Contrary  to  his  usual  practice,  Ilwen  Thsang 
has  unfortunately  given  us  hut  few  details  regarding  the 
monasteries  and  temples  of  Mathura.  This  is  the  more  to 
he  regretted,  as  we  now  know  that  one  of  the  monasteries 
was  established  by  the  great  Indo- Scythian  King  Huvishka , 
about  the  beginning  of  the  Christian  era,  and  that  one  of  the 
stone  statues,  judging  by  the  size  of  its  hand,  could  not  have 
been  less  than  20  feet  in  height. 

The  first  place  described  by  Hwen  Thsang  is  a monastery 
situated  on  a mound,  at  5 or  6 li,  or  about  one  mile,  to  the 

* See  Beal’s  “ Fa  Hian,”  C.  XVI ; and  Julicn’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  p.  207. 



of  the 




.llagistnatzs  ('onr-t 

A Cunning Ka^n. del. 

Cal.  September  1871 

L Mile 

K cuter  a 


Pol hra  Kxv\A  rf=*l 

K anhtzlt  Til u 

shewing  the  foundations  of  the 

behind  the  Jamai  Masjid. 

6 5 1 < • i t 


Litho.  at  the  Survr.  Ger  's.  Office. 




east  of  the  city.  Cells  were  formed  in  the  sides  of  the 
mound,  which  was  approached  through  a hollow,  and  in  the 
midst  was  a Stupa  containing  the  nails  of  Buddha.  This 
monastery  is  said  to  have  been  built  by  the  holy  TJpagupta, 
who,  as  we  learn  from  one  of  the  legends  of  Pdtali  Putra , 
was  a contemporary  of  Asoka.  The  nails  and  beard  of  the 
holy  man  were  still  preserved. 

On  another  mound  to  the  north  of  this  monastery,  there 
was  a cave  containing  a stone  chamber,  20  feet  high  and  30 
feet  long,  which  was  full  of  bamboo  spikes  only  four  inches 
in  length.  These  spikes  represented  the  number  of  husbands 
and  their  wives  who  had  been  converted  by  TJpagupta . 

At  24  or  25  li,  or  just  four  miles  to  the  south-east  of 
the  stone  chamber,  there  was  a large  dry  tank,  with  a Stupa 
on  its  bank,  which  marked  the  spot  where  Buddha  was  said  to 
have  taken  exercise.  On  this  spot  also,  according  to  the 
local  legends,  a monkey  had  offered  honey  to  Buddha,  which 
the  teacher  graciously  accepted  and  directed  that  it  should  be 
mixed  with  water  and  given  to  the  monks.  The  glad  monkey 
made  a wild  bound,  and  fell  into  the  tank  and  died ; but 
owing  to  the  powerful  influence  of  his  good  act,  he  became 
a man  in  his  next  birth. 

In  a forest  at  a short  distance  to  the  north  of  the  tank 
there  was  another  holy  spot,  where  the  four  previous  Buddhas 
were  said  to  have  taken  exercise ; and  all  round  it  there  were 
numerous  Stupas,  which  marked  the  places  where  no  less 
than  1,250  arhats , or  holy  men,  including  Sdriputra,  Mudga- 
laputra]  and  others,  used  to  sit  in  meditation.  But  besides 
these,  there  were  several  other  Stupas  on  the  spots  where 
Buddha  at  different  times  had  explained  the  law. 

The  two  principal  sites  described  by  II wen  Tlisang  can, 
I think,  be  fixed  with  tolerable  certainty,  namely,  that  of 
the  famous  TJpagupta  monastery,  and  that  of  the  monkey’s 
offering.  The  first  is  said  to  be  at  5 or  G li,  or  just  one  mile, 
to  the  east  of  the  city ; but  as  an  eastern  direction  would 
take  us  to  the  low  ground,  on  the  opposite  bank  of  the 
Jumna,  where  no  ruins  now  exist,  I feel  quite  satisfied  that 
we  should  read  west  instead  of  east.  This  change  is  rendered 
almost  certain  by  the  discovery  of  numerous  Buddhist 
remains  inside  the  great  square  of  the  Katra,  which  is  just  one 
mile  to  the  westward  of  the  old  fort  of  Mathura.  But  it  is 

v 2 


rendered  quite  certain  by  the  more  recent  discovery  of  very 
important  Buddhist  remains  and  old  inscriptions  in  a mound 
beside  a tank  which  is  situated  just  three  miles  to  the  south- 
east of  the  Katra  mound.  This  tank  mound  I take  to  he  the 
place  where  Buddha  was  said  to  have  taken  exercise,  and 
where  the  monkey  made  his  offering  of  honey.  The  direction 
is  precisely  the  same,  and  the  distance  agrees  also  as  well  as 
can  he  made  out  from  II wen  Thsang’s  statements.  He  gives 
the  distance  as  four  miles  from  the  stone  chamber,  which  was 
at  some  unstated,  hut  certainly  short,  distance  to  the  north 
of  the  JJpagupta  monastery.  The  nearest  mounds  are  about 
half  a mile  to  the  north  of  the  Katra , which  will  make  the 
whole  distance  3^  miles,  if  measured  in  a direct  line  by  the 
British  road,  which  passes  outside  the  city,  hut  which  will 
he  fully  four  miles  if  measured  by  the  old  road,  which  goes 
through  the  city.  Had  the  Chinese  pilgrim  given  us  the 
name  of  the  monastery  built  by  JJpagupta,  we  might,  perhaps, 
have  obtained  some  absolute  proof  of  its  identity  with  the 
site  of  the  Katra  ; but  I believe  that  the  very  strong  reasons 
which  I have  just  before  given  are  amply  sufficient  to  fix 
the  site  of  the  JJpagupta  monastery  at  the  present  Katra* 

There  are  a great  number  of  lofty  earthen  mounds 
around  Mathura  which  are  covered  with  fragments  of  stone 
and  brick.  Nothing,  however,  is  known  about  them,  al- 
though every  one  of  them  has  a separate  name.  The 
numerous  fragments  of  stone  which  are  found  upon  them  show 
that  they  are  not  old  brick-kilns,  as  might  have  been  supposed 
from  their  vicinity  to  the  city.  Apparently,  they  arc 
natural  mounds  such  as  are  found  everywhere  along  the  lower 
course  of  Jumna,  and  which  have  usually  been  taken 
advantage  of  for  the  sites  of  forts  or  temples.  Thus  the  old 
fort  of  Mathura  is  perched  upon  a similar  mound,  and  so  also 
is  the  Jama  Masjid  in  the  middle  of  the  Katra  square. 
Most  of  the  names  of  these  mounds  refer  to  the  Brahmani- 
cal  divinities ; but  there  are  two  of  them,  such  as  the  Anand 
Tila  and  the  Vinayak  Tila,  that  are  unmistakeably  Buddhist, 
and  which  may  possibly  refer  to  the  two  Stupas  of  Ananda  and 

* I am  indebted  to  Mr.  S.  Growse,  of  tbe  Civil  Service,  for  the  important  information 
that  numerous  ruined  mounds  exist  to  the  south-west  of  the  Katra,  about  1 .V  miles  distant,  iu 
one  of  winch,  just  two  years  ago,  was  found  a golden  casket  with  the  usual  Buddhist  deposits 
of  the  seven  precious  things.  The  position  of  these  mounds  agrees  better  with  the  distance 
of  one  mile  from  the  city  than  the  site  of  the  Katra  which  is  only  just  outside  the  city.  — 
See  Plate  No.  XXXIX.  for  a map  of  Mathura. 



TJpdli  (the  Vindyak  or  teacher  of  Vinaya ) as  described  by 
Hwen  Thsang.  Both  of  these  mounds  are  to  the  north  of 
the  city.  To  the  south  there  are  seven  mounds  known  as  the 
Sat  Tila  which  are  severally  named  as  follows: — 1,  Dlm- 
Jca-Tila;  2.  Sapt  Bishi  ; 3,  Bat,  or  But,  Tila;  4,  Narad; 
5,  Kans ; 6,  Kal-jug ; 7,  Ndgshesha .*  Now,  it  is  remark- 
able that  the  number  of  great  Stupas  of  the  disciples  of  Buddha 
was  also  seven ; but  unfortunately  as  nothing  is  recorded 
regarding  their  relative  positions,  we  are  left  entirely  to 
conjecture  whether  these  mounds  may  possibly  represent 
the  seven  famous  Stupas  of  Buddha’s  principal  disciples. 
I think  that  it  would  be  worth  while  to  make  some  excava- 
tions in  all  of  these  seven  mounds  to  the  south,  as  well  as 
in  the  two  northern  mounds  which  still  bear  Buddhistical 

The  Katra  mound  has  been  successively  occupied  by 
Buddhists,  Brahmans,  and  Musalmans.  The  Katra,  or 
market-place,  is  an  oblong  enclosure  like  a Sardi,  804  feet  in 
length  by  G53  feet  in  breadth.  In  the  midst  of  this  square 
stands  the  Jama  Masjid,  on  a large  mound  from  25  to  30  feet 
in  height.  The  mosque  is  172  feet  long  and  66  feet  broad, 
with  a raised  terrace  in  front  of  the  same  length,  but  with  a 
breadth  of  86  feet,  the  whole  being  30  feet  in  height  above 
the  ground.  About  5 feet  lower,  there  is  another  terrace 
286  feet  in  length  by  268  feet  in  breadth,  on  the  eastern  edge 
of  which  stands  the  mosque.  There  is  no  inscription  on  the 
building,  but  the  people  ascribe  it  to  Aurungzib,  who  is  said 
to  have  pulled  down  the  great  Hindu  temple  of  Kesava 
Deva,  or  Keso  Bay,  that  formerly  stood  on  this  high  mound, 
a most  noble  position,  which  commands  a tine  view  of  the 
whole  city.  Curiously  enough  I have  been  able  to  verify 
this  charge  against  Aurungzib  by  means  of  some  inscrip- 
tions on  the  pavement  slabs  which  were  recorded  by  Hindu 
pilgrims  to  the  shrine  of  Kesava  Bay.  In  relaying  the 
pavement,  the  Muhammadan  architect  was  obliged  to  cut 
many  of  the  slabs  to  make  them  tit  into  their  new  places. 
This  is  proved  by  several  of  the  slabs  bearing  incomplete 
portions  of  Nagari  inscriptions  of  a late  date.  One  slab  has 

* During  a short  visit  in  the  present  year,  1871,  I could  not  find  a single  person  who 
knew  the  Anand  Tila.  The  Dlm-ka-Tila  is  also  an  invention  of  my  informant  as  it  is 
evidently  intended  for  DhM-lca-lila,  or  the  “mound  of  dust,”  that  is,  the  refuse  of  a brick-kiln, 
of  which  the  mound  in  question  is  actually  composed, 



“ bat  1713,  Rhdlgun,”  the  initial  Sam  of  Sambat  having  been 
cut  off.  Another  slab  has  the  name  of  Keso  Ray , the  rest 
being  wanting;  while  a third  hears  the  late  date  of  S.  1720. 
These  dates  are  equivalent  to  A.  D.  1G56  and  16G3  ; and  as 
the  latter  is  five  years  subsequent  to  the  accession  of 
Aurungzib,  it  is  certain  that  the  Hindu  temple  was  still 
standing  at  the  beginning  of  his  reign.*' 

The  greater  part  of  the  foundations  of  the  Hindu  temple 
of  Kesava  Ray  may  still  be  traced  at  the  back  of  the  Masjid. 
Indeed,  the  back  wall  of  the  mosque  itself  is  actually  built 
upon  the  plinth  of  the  temple,  one  of  the  cyma  reversa 
mouldings  being  filled  up  with  brick  and  mortar.  I traced 
the  walls  for  a distance  of  1G3  feet  to  the  westward,  but 
apparently  this  was  not  the  whole  length  of  the  temple,  as 
the  mouldings  of  the  Hindu  plinth  at  the  back  of  the  Masjid 
are  those  of  an  exterior  wall.  I think  it  probable  that  the 
temple  must  have  extended  at  least  as  far  as  the  front  of  the 
mosque,  which  would  give  a total  length  of  250  feet,  with  an 
extreme  breadth  of  nearly  72  feet,  the  floor  of  the  building 
being  no  less  than  25  feet  above  the  ground.  Judging  from 
these  dimensions,  the  temple  of  Kesava  Deva  must  have  been 
one  of  the  largest  in  India.!  I was  unable  to  obtain  any 
information  as  to  the  probable  date  of  this  magnificent  fane. 
It  is  usually  called  Keso  Ray,  and  attributed  to  Raja  Jaga 
Deva,  but  some  say  that  the  enshrined  image  was  that  of 
Jaga  Deva , and  that  the  builder’s  name  was  Ray  or  Raja 
Kesava  Deva.  It  is  possible  that  it  may  have  been  one  of 
the  “innumerable  temples”  described  by  Mahmud  in  his 
letter  to  the  Governor  of  Ghazni  written  in  A.  D.  1017,  as  we 
know  that  the  conqueror  spared  the  temples  either  through 
admiration  of  their  beauty,  or  on  account  of  the  difficulty  of 
destroying  them.  Mahmud  remained  at  Mathura  only  20 
days,  but  during  that  time  the  city  was  pillaged  and  burned, 
and  the  temples  were  rifled  of  their  statues.  Amongst  these 
there  were  “ five  golden  idols  whose  eyes  were  of  rubies, 
valued  at  50,000  dinars,”  or  £25,000.  A sixth  golden  image 

* I have  since  found  the  most  complete  and  satisfactory  confirmation  of  my  opinion  in 
the  travels  of  Tavernier,  Part  II.,  B.  III.,  ch.  12,  where  he  describes  the  Hindu  temple  as 
still  standing  at  the  time  of  his  visit,  apparently  about  A.  D.  1651),  and  certainly  after  the 
accession  of  Aurungzib. 

f This  opinion  is  fully  confirmed  by  Tavernier,  who  describes  the  temple  as  “ tres- 
mngnifiquc,”  and  states  that  it  ranked  next  after  the  temples  of  Jagannath  and  Bandras. — 
See  Plate  No.  XL.  for  a plan  of  the  Masjid  and  Temple. 



weighed  98,300  mishkals,  or  1,120  fibs.,  and  was  decorated 
with  a sapphire  weighing  300  mishkals,  or  3^  Ihs.  But, 
“ besides  these  images,  there  were  above  one  hundred  idols  of 
silver,  which  loaded  as  many  camels.”  Altogether  the  value 
of  the  idols  carried  off  by  Mahmud  cannot  have  been  less 
than  three  millions  of  rupees,  or  £300,000. 

The  date  of  Mahmud’s  invasion  was  A.  D.  1017,  or 
somewhat  less  than  400  years  after  the  visit  of  the  Chinese 
pilgrim  Hwen  Thsang,  who  in  A.  D.  634  found  only  live 
Brahmanical  temples  in  Mathura.  It  is  during  these  four 
centuries,  therefore,  that  we  must  place,  not  only  the  decline 
and  fall  of  Buddhism,  hut  its  total  disappearance  from  this 
great  city,  in  which  it  once  possessed  twenty  large  monas- 
teries, besides  many  splendid  monuments  of  its  most  famous 
teachers.  Of  the  circumstances  which  attended  the  downfall 
of  Buddhism  we  know  almost  nothing ; hut  as  in  the  present 
case  we  find  the  remains  of  a magnificent  Brahmanical  temple 
occupying  the  very  site  of  what  must  once  have  been  a large 
Budclliist  establishment,  we  may  infer  with  tolerable  certainty 
that  the  votaries  of  Sakya  Muni  were  expelled  by  force,  and 
that  their  buildings  were  overthrown  to  furnish  materials  for 
those  of  their  Brahmanical  rivals ; and  now  these  in  their 
turn  have  been  thrown  down  by  the  Musalmans. 

I made  the  first  discovery  of  Buddhist  remains  at  the 
temple  of  Kesciva  Hay  in  January  1853,  when,  after  a long 
search,  I found  a broken  pillar  of  a Buddhist  railing  sculp- 
tured with  the  figure  of  Maya  Devi  standing  under  the  sal 
tree.*  „At  the  same  time  I found  the  capitals  of  two  large 
round  pillars  of  an  early  date,  which  are  most  probably 
Buddhist,  along  with  a fragment  of  an  inscription  of  the 
Gupta  dynasty,  containing  the  well  known  genealogy  from 
Gupta,  the  founder,  down  to  Samudra  Gupta,  where  the  stone 
is  broken  off.  During  the  present  year  I have  discovered  the 
peculiarly  curved  architrave  of  a Buddhist  gateway,  which  is 
richly  sculptured  on  both  sides  with  buildings,  figures,  and 
trees,  including  a representation  of  a gateway  itself.  I found 
also  a very  perfect  standing  figure  of  Buddha,  the  Teacher, 
which  had  lately  been  discovered  in  clearing  out  a well  at  the 
north-west  corner  of  the  temple.  The  figure  is  3^  feet  high, 
with  the  left  hand  grasping  the  drapery,  and  the  right  hand 

* Now  iu  the  Labor  Museum. 



raised  in  the  act  of  teaching.  On  the  pedestal  there  is  a 
dated  inscription,  in  two  lines,  in  characters  of  an  early 
period.  The  date  is  given  in  figures  which  I read  as  S.  281 
or  A.  D.  359.  The  remainder  of  the  inscription,  wffiich  is  in 
perfect  order,  records  the  gift  of  a statue  of  Sakya  IMiikslm 
to  the  Yasa  Vilidtra , or,  “ splendid  monastery,”  which  I take 
to  have  been  the  name  of  the  Buddhist  establishment  that 
once  existed  on  the  spot. 

In  the  same  well  there  were  found  five  other  pieces  of 
Buddhist  sculpture,  of  which  the  only  specimens  worth  men- 
tioning are  a colossal  arm  and  hand,  and  a small  figure  of 
Buddha,  the  Ascetic,  with  an  imperfect  inscription  on  its 
pedestal  in  characters  of  the  Gupta  dynasty.  All  these  dis- 
coveries arc  sufficient  to  show  that  the  mound  of  Kesava  Bay 
must  have  been  the  site  of  a Buddhist  establishment  of  much 
wealth  and  of  considerable  size.  The  inscribed  statue  proves 
that  here  stood  the  Yasa  monastery,  and  the  gateway  archi- 
trave shows  that  there  must  also  have  been  a Stupa  sur- 
rounded with  the  stone  railing  which  is  peculiar  to  Buddhist 
architecture,  and  which  on  that  account  I have  ventured  to 
call  the  Buddhist  railing.  The  site  is  a most  promising  one 
for  discovery ; and  as  the  Masjid  has  long  been  disused,  owing 
to  many  dangerous  cracks  in  both  roof  and  walls,  I believe 
that  there  would  not  be  any  objection  whatever  to  a complete 
exploration  of  the  mound. 

The  most  extensive  discoveries  at  Mathura  have  been 
made  in  a mound  close  to  the  Jail,  which,  according  to  the 
inscriptions,  would  appear  to  have  been  the  site  of  at  least 
two  different  monasteries,  named  the  Huvishka  Viliam  and 
the  Kunda-Suka  Vihdra.  The  first  of  these  names  I deci- 
phered in  1S60  from  a circular  inscription  round  the  base  of 
a column,  and  the  second  name  I found  early  in  the  present 
year,  18G3,  on  a large  flat  slab  of  stone  which  had  appa- 
rently been  used  as  a scat. 

In  my  notice  of  the  first  discovery,  which  was  published 
in  the  Asiatic  Society’s  Journal  for  1SG0,  I identified  this 
Huvishka  with  his  namesake  of  the  Wardak  inscription,  and 
with  the  Hushka  of  the  Baja  Tarangini ; and  this  identifi- 
cation has  since  been  adopted  by  all  who  have  made  any 
reference  to  cither  of  these  records.  The  question  is  one  of 
considerable  importance,  as  it  enables  us  to  fix  the  date  of  the 



building  of  the  monastery  in  the  latter  half  of  the  century 
immediately  preceding  tlie  Christian  era,  at  which  period 
the  three  Indo-Scytliian  princes,  H ushlca  and  his  brothers, 
Kanishka  and  Jushka,  ruled  over  Kabul,  Kashmir,  and  the 
Punjab.  The  bases  of  about  30  pillars  belonging  to  this 
monastery  have  now  been  discovered,  of  which  no  less  than 
15  are  inscribed  with  the  names  of  the  donors  who  presented 
the  columns  to  the  monastery.  But  as  one  of  these  gifts 
consisted  of  sis  pillars,  a second  of  25,  and  a third  of  26 
pillars,  there  still  remains  40  columns  to  bo  discovered,  which 
will  bring  up  the  total  number  to  70.  The  diameter  of  the 
circular  shafts  of  these  pillars  varies  from  17  to  18  inches, 
and  the  side  of  the  square  base  23^-  to  24  inches.  They  arc 
all  very  coarsely  worked,  the  rough  marks  of  the  chisel  never 
having  been  smoothed  away. 

The  name  of  the  second  monastery,  Kunda-SuTca , refers, 
I believe,  to  the  tank  which  lies  immediately  to  the  west- 
ward of  the  mound.  Kunda-Sulca  means  the  “ dry  tank and 
as  the  position  Of  the  tank  agrees  with  that  assigned  by 
Hwcn  Thsang  to  the  ‘ dry  tank’  in  which  the  monkey  was 
killed,  I think  there  can  be  no  doubt  of  the  accuracy  of  my 

The  discoveries  already  made  in  the  Jail  mound,  amongst 
the  ruins  of  the  Huvislika  and  Kunda-Suka  monasteries,  have 
been  very  interesting  on  account  of  their  variety,  as  they 
comprise  statues  of  all  sizes,  bas-reliefs,  pillars,  Buddhist 
railings,,  votive  Stupas,  stone  umbrellas,  and  many  other 
objects  peculiar  to  Buddhism,  of  a date  as  early  as  the  first 
century  of  the  Christian  era.*  Amongst  the  broken  statues 
there  is  the  left  hand  of  a colossal  figure  of  Buddha,  the 
Teacher,  which  measures  exactly  one  foot  across  the  palm. 
The  statue  itself,  therefore,  could  not  have  been  less  than 
from  20  to  24  feet  in  height,  and  with  its  pedestal,  halo,  and 
umbrella  canopy  it  must  have  been  fully  30  feet  in  height. 
Stone  statues  of  this  great  size  are  so  extremely  difficult  to 
move,  that  they  can  be  very  rarely  made.  It  is  true  that 
some  of  the  Jain  statues  of  Gwalior  are  larger,  such  as  the 
standing  colossus  in  the  TJrwdhi  of  the  fort,  which  is  57  feet 

* Several  inscriptions  have  since  been  discovered  which  belong  to  the  first  century 
before  Christ.  The  earliest  is  of  the  Satrap  Sauddsu,  and  the  uext  of  the  Great  King 
Kanishka,  dated  in  the  year  9. 



high,  "with  a foot  9 feet  in  length,  and  the  great  seated  figure 
on  the  east  side  of  the  fort,  which  is  29  feet  high,  with  a 
hand  7 feet  in  length.  But  these  figures  are  hewn  out  of  the 
solid  rock,  to  which  they  are  still  attached  at  the  hack. 
There  are  larger  statues  also  in  Barrna,  hut  they  are  built  up 
on  the  spot  of  brick  and  mortar,  and  cannot  be  moved.  I 
look  forward,  therefore,  with  great  interest  to  the  discovery 
of  other  portions  of  the  Mathura  Colossus,  and  more 
especially  to  that  of  the  pedestal,  on  which  we  may  expect 
to  find  the  name  of  the  donor  of  this  costly  and  difficult 

Most  of  the  statues  hitherto  discovered  at  Mathura  have 
been  those  of  Buddha,  the  Teacher,  who  is  represented  either 
sitting  or  standing,  and  with  one  or  both  hands  raised  in  the 
attitude  of  enforcing  his  argument.  The  prevailing  number 
of  these  statues  is  satisfactorily  illustrated  by  Ilwen  Thsang, 
who  records  that  when  Buddha  was  alive  he  frequently 
visited  Mathura,  and  that  monuments  have  been  erected  “ in 
all  the  places  where  lie  explained  the  law”  Accordingly,  on 
this  one  spot  there  have  already  been  found  two  colossal 
standing  figures  of  the  Teacher,  each  7\  feet  in  height,  two 
life-size  seated  statues,  and  one  three-quarter  size  seated 
statue,  besides  numerous  smaller  figures  of  inferior  work- 

The  most  remarkable  piece  of  sculpture  is  that  of  a 
female  of  rather  more  than  half  life-size.  The  figure  is 
naked,  save  a girdle  of  beads  round  the  waist,  the  same  as  is 
seen  in  the  Bhilsa  sculptures  and  Ajanta  paintings.  The 
attitude  and  the  positions  of  the  hands  are  similar  to  those 
of  the  famous  statue  of  Venus  of  the  Capitol.  But  in  the 
Mathura  statue  the  left  hand  is  brought  across  the  right 
breast,  while  the  right  hand  holds  up  a small  portion  of 
drapery.  The  head  is  slightly  inclined  towards  the  right 
shoulder,  and  the  hair  is  dressed  in  a new  and  peculiar 
manner,  with  long  curls  on  each  side  of  the  face,  which  fall 
from  a large  circular  ornament  on  the  top  of  the  bead.  The 
back  of  the  figure  is  supported  by  a thick  cluster  of  lotus 
stalks  covered  with  buds  and  flowers,  which  are  very  grace- 
fully arranged  and  boldly  executed.  The  plump  face  with 
its  broad  smile  is  the  least  satisfactory  part  of  this  work. 
Altogether  this  statue  is.  one  of  the  best  specimens  of 
unaided  Indian  art  that  I have  met  with.  I presume 

Plate  XL 


Litnographed  at  the  Surveyor  G-  leral's  Omce,  Calcutta,  March  1372. 



that  it  represents  a dancing  girl,  and  that  it  once  adorned 
one  of  the  gateways  of  the  great  Stupa  near  the  monastery 
of  HuvisJika .* 

Three  statues  of  lions  have  also  been  discovered,  but  they 
are  inferior  both  in  design  and  in  execution  to  most  of  the 
other  sculptures.  They  are  all  of  the  same  height,  3 feet, 
and  are  all  in  the  same  attitude,  but  two  of  them  have  the 
left  foot  advanced,  while  the  third  has  the  right  foot  brought 
forward.  The  attitudes  are  stiff,  and  the  workmanship, 
especially  of  the  legs,  is  hard,  wiry,  and  unnatural.  It  is 
the  fore-part  only  of  the  animal  that  is  given,  as  if  issuing 
ont  of  the  block  of  stone  in  rear,  from  which  I infer  that 
they  must  originally  have  occupied  the  two  sides  of  some 
large  gateway,  such  as  we  may  suppose  to  have  belonged  to 
the  great  monastery  of  Huvishka . 

The  most  numerous  remains  are  the  stone  pillars  of  the 
Buddhist  railings,  of  which  at  least  three  different  sizes  have 
been  found.  Those  of  the  largest  size  are  4|  feet  in  height, 
with  a section  of  12^  by  G inches.  When  complete  with 
base  and  coping,  this  railing  would  have  been  about  7 feet  in 
height.  The  middle-sized  pillars  are  3 feet  8 inches  high, 
with  a section  of  9 by  4f  inches.  The  railings  formed  of 
these  pillars  would  have  been  5^  feet  in  height.  Those  of 
the  smallest  size  are  2f  feet  high,  with  a section  of  6^  by  3f 
inches,  which  would  have  formed  a railing  of  only  4 feet  in 
height.  Of  this  last  size  no  more  than  six  specimens  have 
yet  been  found,  but  two  of  them  are  numbered  in  the  ancient 
Gupta  numerals  as  118  and  129,  so  that  many  more  of  them 
still  remain  to  be  discovered.  If  we  assume  the  number  of 
these  pillars  to  have  been  no  more  than  129  the  length  of 
railing  which  they  formed  would  have  been  144  feet,  or  with 
two  entrances  not  less  than  160  feet.  This  might  have  been 
disposed  either  as  a square  enclosure  of  40  feet  side,  or  as  a 
circular  enclosure  of  upwards  of  50  feet  diameter.  The  last 
would  have  been  sufficient  for  the  circular  railing  of  a Stupa 
40  feet  in  diameter. 

No  inscriptions  or  numbers  have  been  found  on  any  of 
the  large  sized  pillars,  but  there  can  be  no  doubt  that  they 
must  have  formed  parts  of  the  surrounding  railings  either  of 

* The  pedestal  of  this  statue,  which  has  since  been  discovered,  shows  that  the  figure 
was  originally  placed  on  the  top  of  a small  column. 

G 2 



Stupas  or  of  holy  trees,  such  as  are  represented  in  tlie  Sanchi 
bas-reliefs,  or  as  we  see  them  in  still  existing  examples  at 
Sanchi  and  Sonari.  Of  the  middle-sized  railing  I found  a 
single  broken  rail,  and  also  a single  specimen  of  the  archi- 
traves or  coping  stones.  In  the  Sanchi  and  Sonari  examples 
the  coping  is  quite  plain,  but  this  Mathura  specimen  is  orna- 
mented on  both  faces  with  semi-circular  panels  or  niches 
containing  figures  and  flowers. 

The  sculptures  on  the  Mathura  pillars  are  of  two  kinds, 
namely,  large  single  figures  on  the  front,  and  on  the  back 
either  small  bas-reliefs  in  compartments  one  above  the  other, 
or  else  full-blown  flowers  at  regular  intervals.  Both  in  the 
single  figures  and  in  the  bas-reliefs  we  find  the  same  mixture 
of  religious  and  social  subjects  as  in  the  sculptures  of  Sanchi 
and  Buddha-Gaya.  On  one  pillar  we  have  a standing  figure 
of  Buddha,  the  Teacher,  with  a halo  and  umbrella  canopy, 
and  on  the  back  four  small  bas-reliefs  representing,  lszf,  a 
holy  tree  with  suspended  garlands,  surrounded  by  a Buddhist 
railing ; 2nd,  a pair  of  figures,  male  and  female ; 3rd,  a 
kneeling  figure  presenting  an  offering  to  a standing  figure ; 
and  4 th,  an  elephant  with  rider.  One  of  the  other  single 
figures  is  a female  holding  a water  vessel  to  her  lips,  and  no 
less  than  four  of  the  others  are  representations  of  Maya  Devi 
standing  under  the  Sal  tree,  and  holding  one  of  its  branches, 
in  which  position  she  is  described  as  having  given  birth  to 
Buddha.  A specimen  of  one  of  the  large-sized  Mathura 
pillars  may  be  seen  in  the  Asiatic  Society’s  Museum  in  Cal- 
cutta, where  it  was  deposited  by  Colonel  Stacy. 

But,  perhaps,  the  most  curious  of  all  the  Mathura  sculp- 
tures is  that  which  was  figured  and  described  by  James 
Prinsep  in  1836  as  a Statue  of  Silenus.  The  block  is  3 feet 
10  inches  in  height,  3 feet  broad,  and  1 foot  4 inches 
thick.  On  the  top  there  is  a circular  bason  16  inches  in 
diameter  and  8 inches  deep.  On  the  front  there  is  a group 
of  three  figures  about  three-fourths  of  life-size  with  two 
smaller  figures,  and  on  the  back  a group  of  four  figures 
of  half  life-size.  In  the  front  group  the  principal  figure 
is  a stout,  half  naked  man  resting  on  a low  seat,  with 
ivy  or  vine-crowned  brow,  and  outstretched  arms,  which 
appear  to  be  supported  by  the  figures,  male  and  female, 
standing  one  on  each  side.  The  dress  of  the  female  is 
most  certainly  not  Indian,  and  is  almost  as  certainly 



Greek.  The  dress  of  the  male  figure  also  appears  to  be 
Greek.  Colonel  Stacy  describes  it  as  “a  kerchief  round  the 
neck  with  a tie  in  front  as  worn  by  sailors but  as  it  widens 
so  it  approaches  the  shoulders  ; I presume  that  it  must  be  the 
short  cloak  of  the  Greeks  which  was  fastened  in  front  in  the 
very  same  manner  as  represented  in  this  sculpture.  Prinsep 
agrees  with  Stacy  in  considering  the  principal  figure  to  be 
Silenus : “ His  portly  carcass,  drunken  lassitude,  and  vine- 
wreathed  forehead,  stamp  the  individual,  while  the  drapery  of 
his  attendants  pronounces  them  at  least  to  be  foreign  to  India, 
whatever  may  be  thought  of  Silenus’s  own  costume,  which  is 
certainly  highly  orthodox  and  Brahmanical.  If  the  sculptor 
were  a Greek,  his  taste  had  been  somewhat  tainted  by  the 
Indian  beau-ideal  of  female  beauty.  In  other  respects  his 
proportions  and  attitudes  are  good  ; nay,  superior  to  any  speci- 
men of  pure  Hindu  sculpture  we  possess ; and,  considering 
the  object  of  the  group,  to  support  a sacrificial  vase  (pro- 
bably of  the  juice  of  the  grape),  it  is  excellent.”  Of  the  group 
on  the  back  I have  but  little  to  say  : the  two  female  figures 
and  one  of  the  men  are  dressed  in  the  same  Greek  costume 
as  the  figures  of  the  other  group,  but  the  fourth  figure,  a 
male,  is  dressed  in  a long  tunic,  which  is  certainly  not  Greek, 
and  cannot  well  be  Indian.  The  religious  Buddhist  would 
have  his  right  shoulder  bare,  and  the  layman  would  have  the 
dlioti , or  waist-cloth.  The  Greek  clad  male  figure  may  pos- 
sibly be  Silenus,  but  I am  unable  to  offer  even  a conjecture 
as  to  the  figure  in  the  tunic. 

The  question  now  arises,  how  is  the  presence  of  this  piece 
of  Greek  sculpture  to  be  accounted  for  ?.  Perhaps  the  most 
reasonable  solution  is  to  assume  the  presence  of  a small  body 
of  Bactrian  Greek  sculptors  who  would  have  found  ready 
employment  for  their  services  amongst  the  wealthy  Buddhists, 
just  in  the  same  way  as  goldsmiths  and  artillerymen  after- 
wards found  service  with  the  Mogul  Emperors.  It  must  be 
remembered  that  Mathura  is  close  to  the  great  sand-stone 
quarries  which  for  ages  past  have  furnished  materials  for  the 
sculptors  and  architects  of  Upper  India.  All  the  ancient 
statues  that  I have  met  with  in  Bohilkhund  and  Oudh  are 
made  of  this  stone,  and  there  can  be  little  doubt  that  the 
Buddhist  custom  of  making  gifts  of  statues  and  pillars  to  the 
various  monasteries  must  have  created  such  a steady  demand 
for  the  sculptor’s  works  as  would  have  ensured  the  continu- 
ous employment  of  many  skilled  workmen.  Many  of  the 



Bactrian  Greeks  may  thus  have  found  remunerative  service 
amongst  the  Indian  Buddhists.  Indeed,  this  is  the  only  way 
in  which  I can  account,  not  only  for  the  very  superior  exe- 
cution of  many  of  the  earliest  specimens  of  Indian  art,  hut 
also  for  many  of  their  ornamental  details,  such  as  the  fluting 
of  the  pillars  in  the  Western  Panjab  architecture,  and  the 
honeysuckle  and  astragal  ornaments  of  Asoka’s  monoliths, 
all  of  which  are  of  undoubted  Greek  origin.  In  the  great 
fort  of  Narwar  there  still  exists  a Roman  Catholic  Chapel, 
with  a burial-ground  attached,  containing  fifty  tombs  of  all 
sizes,  of  which  two  only  are  inscribed.  One  records  the 
death  of  a German,  named  Cornelius  Oliver,  in  A.  I).  1747  ; 
the  other  of  a young  girl,  named  Margarita,  the  daughter  of 
a Hakim  or  Doctor.  The  first  is  recorded  in  Portuguese,  the 
other  in  Persian.  That  the  fifty  tombs  are  those  of  Chris- 
tians is  proved,  not  only  by  the  presence  of  the  cross  on 
several  of  the  uninscribed  head-stones,  but  by  the  occurrence 
of  the  letters  J.  H.  S.  surmounted  by  a cross  on  the  wall 
immediately  above  the  altar.  I presume  that  these  Chris- 
tians were  gunners  who  formed  the  artillery  portion  of  the 
garrison  of  the  important  fortress  of  Narwar.  Here,  then, 
we  have  the  clearest  proof  of  the  existence  of  a small  body 
of  foreigners  in  Ihe  very  heart  of  India,  who  were  permitted 
the  open  exercise  of  their  religion  by  the  most  bigoted  of  all 
mankind,  the  Indian  Muhammadans.  Such  also,  I think, 
may  have  been  the  position  of  a small  party  of  Bactrian 
Greeks  amongst  the  tolerant  Buddhists  of  the  great  city  of 
Mathura  about  the  beginning  of  the  Christian  era.  Their 
very  names  are  unknown,  and  their  occupations  are  uncertain, 
but  their  foreign  religion  is  attested  beyond  all  doubt  by  the 
presence  of  a Bacchic  altar,  bearing  the  well  known  figure 
of  the  wine-bibbing  Silenus. 

III.  K II  A L S I. 

About  15  miles  to  the  westward  of  Masuri,  and  on  the 
right  bank  of  the  Jumna  just  above  the  junction  of  the 
Tons  River,  there  stands  a huge  quartz  boulder  covered  with 
one  of  the  well  known  inscriptions  of  Asoka.  The  inscribed 
rock  is  situated  close  to  the  little  villages  of  Byas  and  Hari- 
pur,  and  about  one  mile  and  a half  to  the  south  of  the  large 
and  well  known  village  of  Khalsi,  by  which  name  I propose 
to  distinguish  this  copy  of  Asoka’s  edicts  from  those  of 



Kapnrdagiri , Junagiri,  Pohitds,  and  Gmtjam .*  In  speaking 
of  Firuz  Shali’s  Pillar  at  Delhi,  which  we  know  was  brought 
from  the  foot  of  the  hills  on  the  western  hank  of  the  Jumna 
near  Khidrabad,  I have  already  identified  the  district  of 
Khalsi  with  part  of  the  ancient  kingdom  of  Srughna,  as 
described  by  Hwen  Thsang.  As  my  reasons  for  coming  to 
this  conclusion  are  based  entirely  upon  the  statements  of  the 
Chinese  pilgrim,  it  is  necessary  that  they  should  be  given 
in  detail. 

On  leaving  Sthaneswara  or  Tlidnesar,  Hwen  Thsang 
records  that  he  went  400  li,  or  06  miles,  to  the  eastward,  to 
the  kingdom  of  Su-lu-kin-na,  or  Sruglma,  which  he  describes 
as  being  bounded  by  the  Ganges  on  the  east,  and  by  high 
mountains  on  the  north,  and  as  being  watered  by  the  .7 umna, 
which  ran  through  the  midst  of  it.  The  capital,  which  was 
20  li,  or  upwards  of  three  miles,  in  circuit,  was  situated 
immediately  on  the  west  hank  of  the  J umna ; and,  although 
much  ruined,  its  foundations  were  still  standing.  Amongst 
other  monuments  it  possessed  a Stupa  of  King  Asoka.  The 
direction  given  by  Hwen  Thsang  is  undoubtedly  wrong,  as 
the  Jumna  is  not  more  than  24  miles  distant  from  Thanesar 
towards  the  east.  But  the  mention  of  the  hills  shows  most 
clearly  that  the  hearing  should  be  north-east ; and  as  the 
recorded  distance  of  the  Jumna  at  the  foot  of  the  hills  agrees 
with  the  actual  distance,  the  situation  of  the  capital  of 
Srughna  must  be  looked  for  along  the  western  bank  of  the 
Jumna,  somewhere  between  Khalsi  and  Khidrabad.  At  first 
I was  inclined  to  fix  the  position  of  the  capital  in  the  imme- 
diate neighbourhood  of  the  inscribed  rock  of  Khalsi,  but  I 
could  neit  her  find  nor  hear  of  any  ruins  in  its  vicinity,  and 
the  distance  is  besides  too  great,  being  71  miles  in  a direct 
line,  or  about  80  miles  by  the  road.  If  Hwen  Thsang’s  dis- 
tances is  correct,  the  most  probable  position  of  the  capital 
is  Paota,  on  the  right  bank  of  the  Jumna,  which  is  57  miles 
distant  from  Thanesar  in  a direct  line,  or  about  65  miles  by 
the  road.  I believe  also  that  Paota  is  the  very  place  from 
whence  Firuz  Shah  removed  the  Delhi  column,  for  the  name 
of  its  original  site  is  variously  written  as  Taopar,  or  Topara, 
or  Taoparsuk,  any  one  of  which  by  the  mere  shifting  of  the 
diacritical  points  might  be  read  as  Paotar.  It  is  possible 

* See  Plate  No.  II.  for  a map  of  North-Western  India,  showing  the  position  of  Khalsi, 



also  that  the  word  Suk  may  still  preserve  a trace  of  the 
ancient  name  of  Sughan , which  is  the  spoken  form  of  the 
Sanskrit  Srughna.  I propose  to  explore  this  neighbour- 
hood during  the  ensuing  cold  season.  In  the  meantime  I 
am  satisfied  with  having  shown  that  the  inscribed  rock  of 
Khalsi  is  situated  within  the  territory  of  Srughna,  in  whose 
great  monastery  the  Chinese  pilgrim  spent  upwards  of  four 
months,  because  the  monks  discussed  the  most  difficult  ques- 
tions so  ably  that  all  doubts  where  cleared  up.  By  the  hands 
of  this  learned  fraternity  were  most  probably  engraved  the 
two  great  copies  of  the  edicts  of  Asoka  which  are  still  ex- 
tent on  the  Khalsi  rock  and  on  the  Delhi  pillar  of  Eiruz 

Between  Khalsi  and  the  Jumna  the  land  on  the  western 
hank  of  the  river  is  formed  in  two  successive  ledges  or  level 
steppes,  each  about  100  feet  in  height.  Near  the  foot  of  the 
upper  steppe  stands  the  large  quartz  boulder  which  has  pre- 
served the  edicts  of  Asoka  for  upwards  of  2,000  years.  The 
block  is  10  feet  long  and  10  feet  high,  and  about  8 feet  thick 
at  bottom.  The  south-eastern  face  has  been  smoothed,  but 
rather  unevenly,  as  it  follows  the  undulations  of  the  original 
surface.  The  main  inscription  is  engraved  on  this  smoothed 
surface,  which  measures  5 feet  in  height  with  a breadth  of  5^ 
feet  at  top,  which  increases  towards  the  bottom  to  7 feet  10^- 
inches.  The  deeper  hollows  and  cracks  have  been  left  unin- 
scribed, and  the  lines  of  letters  are  undulating  and  uneven. 
Towards  the  bottom  the  letters  increase  in  size  until  they  be- 
come about  thrice  as  large  as  those  of  the  upper  part.  Owing 
either  to  this  enlargement  of  the  letters,  or  perhaps  to  the 
latter  part  of  the  inscription  being  of  later  date,  the  prepared 
surface  was  too  small  for  the  whole  record,  which  was,  there- 
fore, completed  on  the  left  hand  side  of  the  rock. 

On  the  right  hand  side  an  elephant  is  traced  in  outline, 
with  the  words  Gajatame  inscribed  between  his  legs  in  the 
same  characters  as  those  of  the  inscription.  The  exact  mean- 
ing of  these  words  I do  not  know;  hut  as  the  Junagiri  rock 
inscription  closes  with  a paragraph  stating  that  the  place  is 
called  Sweta  Uasti,  or  the  “ white  elephant,”  I think  it  pro- 
bable that  Gajatame  may  mean  the  “ dark  or  black  elephant,” 
and  may,  therefore,  be  the  name  of  the  rock  itself.  Amongst 
the  people,  however,  the  rock  is  known  by  the  name  of 
Chhatr  Seta,  or  “ the  canopy  stone,”  which  would  seem  to 


Plate  SLI 

North  face  of  Rock. 

3 ' >6±-ti^biD-ygi^d^s^^>Sxt-ptfiM\  ,?■' 
*1  £3fcd H l ^ litetl^  iyHUS  ^ ' 

5 A. 

6 - 

7 - 

8 - 
9 - 
ao  - 

li  - 
ii  - 


14  - 





aid  ^ urt  hw-  ° u b ■ 

\ % v #•  Am*  «±+«  £ ^ tx  rf  0 A. 

0- £« <f;l-'u‘  ,ni<];. 

KJ**  f|f 

• fri  o c < G-iKd»te  a wto  €-J  o* 

tt  K « <^°\. '; 

f *•  W+W  v*  fit  &>**  ^ 

^JfyXc^t>L'Lb^fi-  0 66.^4  + 0 -xJO-ff 
ax  h <y  y ^"yiH  o^o-cn 

A A yABHob  y&i^OAbA  ^ 


A.  Cumangham,  dei. 

rji!iv>zu  1 ■ .OrfifJ^i  a:  tie  Surr«yjr  -~r.r~u  ~ Otfic-  Calrutia. 



show  that  the  inscribed  block  had  formerly  been  covered  over 
by  some  kind  of  canopy,  or  perhaps  only  by  an  umbrella,  as 
the  name  imports.  There  are  a number  of  squared  stones 
lying  about  close  to  the  rock,  as  well  as  several  fragments 
of  octagonal  pillars  and  half  pillars  or  pilasters,  which  are 
hollowed  out  or  fluted  on  the  shorter  faces,  after  the  common 
fashion  of  the  pillars  of  Buddhist  railings.  There  is  also  a 
large  carved  stone,  7 feet  long,  1^  foot  broad,  and  1 foot  in 
height,  which  from  its  upper  mouldings  I judged  to  have 
formed  the  entrance  step  to  some  kind  of  open  porch  in  front 
of  the  inscription  stone. 

“When  found  by  Mr.  Porrest  early  in  1860  the  letters  of 
the  inscription  were  hardly  visible,  the  whole  surface  being 
encrusted  with  the  dark  moss  of  ages  ; but  on  removing  this 
black  film  the  surface  becomes  nearly  as  white  as  marble.  At 
first  sight  the  inscription  looks  as  if  it  was  imperfect  in  many 
places,  hut  this  is  owing  to  the  engraver  having  purposely 
left  all  the  cracked  and  rougher  portions  uninscribed.  On 
comparing  the  different  edicts  with  those  of  the  Kapurdagiri, 
Junagiri,  and  Dlicadi  versions,  I find  the  Khalsi  text  to  be  in 
a more  perfect  state  than  any  one  of  them,  and  more  special- 
ly in  that  part  of  the  13th  edict  which  contains  the  names  of 
the  five  Greek  Kings, — Antiochus,  Ptolemy,  An tigonus, Magas, 
and  Alexander.*  The  Khalsi  text  agrees  with  that  Dhauli 
in  rejecting  the  use  of  the  letter  r,  for  which  l is  everywhere 
substituted.  But  the  greatest  variation  is  in  the  use  of  the 
palatal  sibilant  s,  which  has  not  been  found  in  any  other 
inscription  of  this  early  date.  This  letter  occurs  in  the  word 
Pdsanda,  which,  curiously  enough,  is  spelt  sometimes  with 
one  s,  and  sometimes  with  the  other,  even  in  the  same  edict. 
As  the  proper  spelling  of  this  word  is  Pashanda,  it  seems 
almost  certain  that  the  people  of  India  Proper  did  not  possess 
the  letter  sh  in  the  time  of  Asoka. 

I made  a complete  impression  of  the  whole  of  this  im- 
portant inscription.  I also  copied  the  whole  of  the  inscrip- 
tion on  the  left  side  by  eye,  as  well  as  most  of  the  more 
obscure  parts  in  the  front  inscription.  I have  since  com- 
pared the  entire  text  with  those  of  the  other  rock  tablets, 
and  I am  now  engaged  in  making  a reduced  copy  of  this  va- 
luable record  for  early  publication.  I propose,  however,  first, 

* See  Plate  No.  XLI.  for  this  portion  of  the  Khalsi  inscription. 



to  compare  it  with  the  Kapurdagari  version  in  the  Arian 
characters.  With  good  copies  of  all  the  different  texts  before 
them,  the  scholars  of  Europe  will  he  able  to  give  a more 
satisfactory  interpretation  of  Asoka’s  edicts  than  has  hitherto 
been  made,  even  with  the  aid  of  all  the  learning  of  Birnouf 
and  Wilson. 


Erom  Srughna  the  Chinese  pilgrim  proceeded  to  Mo-ti- 
pu-lo,  or  Madipur,  to  the  east  of  the  Ganges,  a distance  of 
800  li,  or  133  miles.  Madipur  has  been  identified  by  M.  St. 
Martin  with  Mandawar,  a large  old  town  in  Western  Itohil- 
khund  near  Bijnor.  I had  made  the  same  identification  my- 
self before  reading  M.  St.  Martin’s  remarks,  and  I am  now 
able  to  confirm  it  by  a personal  examination  of  the  locality. 
The  actual  distance  from  Laota  on  the  Jumna  to  Mandawar 
via  Haridwar,  is  not  more  than  110  miles  by  the  present 
roads  ; hut  as  it  wrould  have  been  considerably  more  by  the  old 
Native  tracks  leading  from  village  to  village,  the  distance  re- 
corded by  Hwen  Thsang  is  most  probably  not  far  from  the 
truth,  more  especially  wrhen  wre  remember  that  he  paid  a visit 
to  Ma-yu-lo,  or  Mayurapura , now  Myapoor,  near  Hard  war 
at  the  head  of  the  Ganges  Canal.  But  the  identity  of  the 
site  of  Maddioar  with  Madipur  is  not  dependent  on  this 
one  distance  alone,  as  will  be  seen  from  the  subsequent 
course  of  the  pilgrim,  winch  most  fully  confirms  the  position 
already  derived  from  his  previous  route. 

The  name  of  the  town  is  written  with  the  Maddioar  with 
the  cerebral  d,  and  without  the  nasal.  In  our  maps  it  is  spelt 
Mundore  and  Mundawar.  According  to  Johari  Lai,  Chaodri 
and  Kanungo  of  the  place,  Maddwar  was  a deserted  site  in 
Samvat  1171,  or  A.  D.  1114,  when  his  ancestor  Lwdirka  Las, 
an  Agarwala  Baniya,  accompanied  by  Katdr  Mall,  came  from 
Morari  in  the  Mirat  District,  and  occupied  the  old  mound. 
The  present  towm  of  Maddwar  contains  7,000  inhabitants, 
and  is  rather  more  than  three-quarters  of  a mile  in  length  by 
half  a mile  in  breadth.  But  the  old  mound  which  represents 
the  former  town  is  not  more  than  half  a mile  square.  It  has 
an  average  height  of  10  feet  above  the  rest  of  the  town,  and 
it  abounds  with  large  bricks,  a certain  sign  of  antiquity.  In 
the  middle  of  the  mound  there  is  a ruined  fort,  300  feet 
square,  with  an  elevation  of  G or  7 feet  above  the  rest  of  the 


A Old i AUl{juI 
B Old  Fort 
t .Fv'yvoJu  TU 
d TtiL  r<U 
£ XiittcLa  TaX 






A Cunningham  del. 



At  a 4 noth 


Litho.  at  toe  Su-vr.  Geni’s.  Office.  Cal.  September  1871. 



city.  To  the  north-cast,  distant  about  one  mile  from  the  fort, 
there  is  a large  village,  on  another  mound,  called  Madiya ; 
and  between  the  two  lies  a large  tank  called  Kunda  Tdl, 
surrounded  by  numerous  small  mounds  which  are  said  to  he 
the  remains  of  buildings.  Originally  these  two  places  would 
appear  to  have  formed  one  large  town  about  mile  iu  length 
by  half  a mile  iu  breadth,  or  3^  miles  in  circuit.  The  Ka - 
nnnejo  states  that  Madawar  formed  part  of  the  dominions 
of  Pithora  Raja,  and  that  it  possessed  a large  Hindu  temple 
of  stone,  which  was  afterwards  destroyed  by  one  of  the  Ghori 
Sultans,  who  built  the  present  Jama  Masjid  on  its  site,  and 
with  its  materials.  The  stones  of  the  mosque  are  squared 
blocks  of  soft  grey  sandstone,  and  as  many  of  them  exhibit 
cramp-holes  on  the  outside,  there  can  be  no  doubt  that  they 
must  originally  have  belonged  to  some  other  building. 

To  the  south-east  of  the  town  there  is  a large,  deep,  irre- 
gularly shaped  piece  of  water  called  Tirwdli  Tdl.  It  is  near- 
ly half  a mile  in  length,  but  not  more  than  300  feet  broad  in 
its  widest  part.  It  is  filled  in  the  rains  by  a small  chan- 
nel carrying  the  drainage  of  the  country  from  the  north-east, 
and  its  overflow  falls  into  the  Malini  River,  about  two  miles 
distant.  This  pool  is  only  part  of  a natural  channel  of  drain- 
age which  has  been  deepened  by  the  excavation  of  earth  for 
the  bricks  of  the  town.  But  in  spite  of  this  evident  origin 
of  the  Madawar  tank,  it  was  gravely  asserted  by  the  Bud- 
dhists to  have  been  produced  by  an  earthquake  which  accom- 
panied the  death  of  a celebrated  saint,  named  Vimala  Mitra . 

According  to  Hwen  Thsang,  Madipur  was  20  li,  or  34 
miles,  in  circuit,  which  agrees  very  closely  with  what  would 
appear  to  be  the  most  probable  size  of  the  old  town.  The 
King  was  a Sudra,  who  cared  nothing  for  Buddhism,  but 
worshipped  the  Devas.  There  were  12  Buddhist  monasteries 
containing  about  800  monks,  who  were  mostly  attached  to 
the  school  of  the  Sarvastivddas,  and  there  were  also  about  50 
Bralimanical  temples.*  To  the  south  of  the  town,  at  4 or  5 
li,  or  f of  a mile,  there  was  a small  monastery  in  which 
Gunaprabha  was  said  to  have  composed  100  works ; and  at 
half  a mile  to  the  north  of  this  there  was  a great  monastery 
which  was  famous  as  the  scene  of  Sanghabhadra’ s sudden 

li  2 

* J alien’s  Hwen  Thsang,  II.,  219, 



death  from  chagrin,  when  he  was  overcome  in  argument  hy 
Vasubandliu.  His  relics  were  deposited  in  a Stupa  in  the 
midst  of  a mangoe  grove  only  200  paces  to  the  north-west  of 
the  monastery.  These  two  chiefs  of  Buddhism  lived  about 
the  beginning  of  the  Christian  era,  and  the  Stupci  was  still 
standing  in  A.  D.  631  at  the  time  of  Hwen  Thsang’s  visit. 
There  is  no  trace  now  existing  either  of  the  monasteries  or 
of  the  Stupa , hut  their  sites  can  he  fixed  with  tolerable  cer- 
tainty by  the  aid  of  Hwen  Thsang’s  descriptions.  The  village 
of  Lalpur,  which  is  situated  on  a mound  about  three-quarters 
of  a mile  to  the  south-south-east  of  the  Jama  Masjid,  and 
which  is  built  partly  of  old  bricks,  represents  the  site  of  the 
small  monastery  of  Gunaprabha.  To  the  north  of  Lalpur,  and 
just  half  a mile  distant,  is  the  shrine  of  Hidayat  Shah,  with 
a Masjid  attached,  both  of  which  are  built  of  old  bricks. 
This  spot  I believe  to  be  the  site  of  the  great  monastery  of 
Sanghabhadra.  Lastly,  to  the  west-north-west  of  Hidayat’s 
shrine,  at  a distance  of  200  paces,  there  is  another  shrine,  or 
Fakir's  takia , standing  in  the  midst  of  a mangoe  grove,  like 
the  old  Stupa  of  Sanghabhadra,  the  site  of  which  it  represents 
almost  exactly  as  described  by  Hwen  Tlisang,* 

Besides  the  mangoe  grove  there  was  a second  Stupa 
which  contained  the  relics  of  Vimala  Mitra,  who,  as  a 
disciple  of  Sanghabhadra , must  have  lived  in  the  first  cen- 
tury of  the  Christian  era.  The  legend  relates  that,  on  passing 
the  Stupa  of  his  master  Sanghabhadra,  he  placed  his  hand 
on  his  heart,  and  with  a sigh  expressed  a wish  that  he  might 
live  to  compose  a work  which  should  lead  all  the  students 
of  India  to  renounce  the  “Great  Vehicle”  (Mahd  Yana), 
and  which  should  blot  out  the  name  of  Vasubandliu  for  ever. 
jSto  sooner  had  he  spoken,  than  he  was  seized  with  frenzy, 
and  five  spouts  of  burning  hot  blood  gushed  from  his  mouth. 
Then  feeling  himself  dying,  he  wrote  a letter  “ expressing 
his  repentance  for  having  maligned  the  Mahd  Yana,  and 
hoping  that  his  fate  might  serve  as  an  example  to  all  stu- 
dents.” At  these  words  the  earth  quaked,  and  lie  expired  in- 
stantly. Then  the  spot  where  he  died  suddenly  sank  and 
formed  a deep  ditch,  and  a holy  man  who  witnessed  his  end 
exclaimed — “ To-day  this  master  of  the  scriptures,  by  giving 
way  to  his  passions,  and  by  persisting  in  erroneous  opinions, 

* See  Plate  No.  XL  1 1.  for  map  of  Madawar. 


lias  calumniated  the  Malm  Yana.,  for  which  lie  has  now  fallen 
into  everlasting  hell.”  But  this  opinion  of  the  holy  man 
would  appear  to  have  been  confined  to  the  followers  of  the 
Malta  Yana,  for  the  brethren  of  Vimala  Mitra,  who  were 
Sarvastivaclas  or  students  of  the  lesser  vehicle,  burned  his 
body  and  raised  a Stupa  over  his  relics.  It  must  be  remem- 
bered also  that  Hwen  Tlisang,  who  relates  the  legend,  was 
a zealous  follower  of  the  Malm  Yana,  and  this  no  doubt  led 
him  to  overlook  the  manifest  contradiction  between  the  state- 
ment of  the  uncharitable  arhat,  and  the  fact  that  his  brethren 
had  burned  his  body  in  the  usual  manner.  This  legend,  as 
well  as  several  others,  would  seem  to  show  that  there  was  a 
hostile  and  even  bitter  feeling  between  these  two  great  sects 
of  the  Buddhist  community. 

The  site  of  Vimala  Mitra’ s Stupa  is  described  as  being 
at  the  edge  of  the  mango  grove,  and  from  the  details  of  the 
legend  it  is  clear  that  it  could  have  been  at  no  great  distance 
from  the  Stupa  of  Sanghabhadra.  It  would  appear  also  that 
it  must  have  stood  close  by  the  great  ditch,  or  hollow,  which 
his  opponents  looked  upon  as  the  rent  in  the  earth  by  which 
he  had  sunk  down  to  “ everlasting  hell.”  Now  the  mangoe 
grove  which  I have  before  mentioned  extends  only  120  paces 
to  the  westward  to  the  bank  of  the  deep  tank  called  the 
Virwdli  Tal.  I conclude,  therefore,  that  the  Stupa  of  Vimala 
Mitra  must  have  stood  close  to  the  edge  of  this  tank  and  on 
the  border  of  the  mangoe  grove  which  still  exists  in  the  same 
position  as  described  by  Hwen  Tlisang. 

It,  seems  probable  that  the  people  of  Maddwar,  as  point- 
ed out  by  M.  St.  Martin,  may  be  the  Mathce  of  Megasthenes 
who  dwelt  on  the  banks  of  the  Erineses.  If  so,  that  river 
must  be  the  Malini.  It  is  true  that  this  is  but  a small  stream, 
but  it  was  in  a sacred  grove  on  the  bank  of  the  Malini  that 
Sakuntala  was  brought  up,  and  along  its  course  lay  her  route 
to  the  court  of  Duslimanta  at  Uastinapur.  While  the  lotus 
floats  on  its  waters,  and  while  the  Chakioa  calls  its  mate  on 
its  bank,  so  long  will  the  little  Malini  live  in  the  verse  of 


On  leaving  Madipur  the  Chinese  pilgrim  travelled 
400  li,  or  66  miles  to  the  south-east,  and  arrived  in  the  king- 
dom of  Kiu-pi-shwang-na,  which  M.  Julien  renders  by 



Govisana .*  The  capital  was  14  or  15  li,  or  2|  miles  in  circuit. 
Its  position  was  strong,  being  elevated,  and  of  difficult  access, 
and  it  was  surrounded  by  groves,  tanks,  and  fish  ponds.  There 
were  two  monasteries  containing  100  monks,  and  30  Brali- 
manical  temples.  In  the  middle  of  the  larger  monastery, 
which  was  outside  the  city,  there  was  a Stupa  of  Asoka,  200 
feet  in  height,  built  over  the  spot  where  Buddha  was  said  to 
have  explained  the  law.  There  were  also  two  small  Stupas, 
only  12  feet  high,  containing  his  hair  and  nails. 

According  to  the  bearing  and  distance  from  Madipur,  as 
given  by  II wen  Thsang,  we  must  look  for  Govisana  some- 
where to  the  north  of  Muradabad.  In  this  direction  the 
only  place  of  any  antiquity  is  the  old  fort  of  TJjain,  which  is 
just  one  mile  to  the  east  of  Kashipur.  According  to  the 
route  which  I marched,  the  distance  is  44  Los,  or  GG  miles.  I 
estimate  the  value  of  the  kos  by  the  measured  distance  of  59 
miles  between  the  Post  Offices  of  Bareli  and  Muradabad, 
which  is  always  called  40  kos  by  the  Natives.  The  true 
bearing  of  Kashipur  is  cast-south-cast,  instead  of  south-east, 
but  the  difference  is  not  great ; and  as  the  position  of 
Kashipur  is  equally  clearly  indicated  by  the  subsequent  route 
to  Ahiohhatra,  I feel  quite  satisfied  that  the  old  fort  of  TJjain 
represents  the  ancient  city  of  Govisana  which  was  visited  by 
Hwcn  Thsang. 

Bishop  Hcber  describes  Kashipur  as  a £t  famous  place  of 
Hindu  pilgrimage  which  was  built  by  a divinity,  named 
Kashi,  5,000  years  ago.”f  But  the  good  Bishop  was  grossly 
deceived  by  his  informant,  as  it  is  well  known  that  the  town 
is  a modern  one, — it  having  been  built  about  A.  I).  1718  by 
Kashi  Natli,  a follower  of  Baja  Devi  Chandra,  or  Deb  Chand, 
of  Champawat,  in  Kumaon.  The  old  fort  is  now  called  Ujain ; 
but  as  that  is  the  name  of  the  nearest  village,  it  seems  pro- 
bable that  the  true  name  has  been  lost.  The  place  itself  had 
been  deserted  for  several  hundred  years  before  the  occupation 
of  Kashipur ; but  as  the  holy  tank  of  Dron  Sugar  had  never 
ceased  to  be  visited  by  pilgrims,  I presume  that  the  name  of 
the  tank  must  have  gradually  superseded  that  of  the  fort. 
Even  at  the  present  day,  the  name  Dron  Sugar  is  just  as 
well  known  as  that  of  Kashipur. 

* Julieu’s  Hwcn  Thsang,  II.,  233. 
f Travels,  Vol.  II.,  p.  246. 


O -o 

Tlic  old  fort  of  Ujain  is  very  peculiar  in  its  form,  which 
may  ho  best  compared  to  the  body  of  a guitar.  It  is 

3.000  feet  in  length  from  west  to  cast,  and  1,500  feet  in 
breadth,  the  whole  circuit  being  upwards  of  9,000  feet,  or 
rather  less  than  2 miles.  Ilwen  Tlisang  describes  the  circuit 
of  Govisana  as  about  12,000  feet,  or  nearly  2\  miles  ; hut  in 
this  measurement  he  must  have  included  the  long  mound  of 
ruins  on  the  south  side,  which  is  evidently  the  remains  of  an 
ancient  suburb.  I3y  including  this  mound  as  an  undoubted 
part  of  the  old  city,  the  circuit  of  the  ruins  is  upwards  of 

11.000  feet,  or  very  nearly  the  same  as  that  given  by  Hwen 
Tlisang.  Numerous  groves,  tanks,  and  lisli  ponds  still 
surround  the  place.  Indeed,  the  trees  are  particularly 
luxuriant,  owing  to  the  high  level  of  the  water  which  is 
within  5 or  6 feet  of  the  surface.  Tor  the  same  reason  the 
tanks  are  numerous  and  always  full  of  water.  The  largest 
of  these  is  the  Dron  Sugar,  which,  as  well  as  the  fort,  is  said 
to  have  been  constructed  by  the  five  Pandu  brothers  for  the 
use  of  their  teacher  Drona.  The  tank  is  only  GOO  feet 
square,  hut  it  is  esteemed  very  holy,  and  is  much  frequented 
by  pilgrims  on  their  way  to  the  source  of  the  Ganges.  Its 
high  banks  are  covered  with  sati  monuments  of  recent  date. 
The  walls  of  the  fort  are  built  of  large  massive  bricks, 
15  inches  by  10  inches  by  2 \ inches,  which  are  always  a 
certain  sign  of  antiquity.  The  general  height  of  the  walls 
is  30  feet  above  the  fields ; but  the  whole  is  now  in  complete 
ruin,  and  covered  with  dense  jungle.  Shallow  ditches  still 
exist  on  all  sides  except  the  east.  The  interior  is  very 
uneven,’  but  the  mass  has  a mean  height  of  about  20  feet 
above  the  country.  There  are  two  low  openings  in  the 
ramparts,  one  to  the  north-west  and  the  other  to  the  south- 
west, which  now  serve  as  entrances  to  the  jungle,  and  which 
the  people  say  were  the  old  gates  of  the  fort.* 

There  are  some  small  temples  on  the  western  bank  of 
the  Dron  Sugar ; but  the  great  place  of  worship  is  the 
modern  temple  of  Jwala  Devi,  600  feet  to  the  eastward  of  the 
fort.  This  goddess  is  also  called  JJjaini  Devi,  and  a great  fair 
is  held  in  her  honour  on  the  8th  day  of  the  waning  moon  of 
Chaitra.  Other  smaller  temples  contain  symbols  of  Mahadeva 
under  the  titles  of  Dhutesar,  Muhtesar,  Ndgndth,  and 

* Sec  riale  No.  XLII.  for  a map  of  Ujain  or  Govisana. 



Jagesar.  But  all  of  these  temples  are  of  recent  date;  the 
sites  of  the  more  ancient  fanes  being  marked  by  mounds  of 
various  dimensions  from  10  to  upAvards  of  30  feet  in  height. 
The  most  remarkable  of  these  mounds  is  situated  inside  the 
northern  Avail  of  the  fort,  above  which  the  ruins  rise  to  a 
height  of  52  feet  above  the  country,  and  22  feet  above  the 
ramparts.  This  mound  is  called  Bhimgaja  or  JBhimgada,  that 
is,  Bhim’s  club,  by  which  I understand  a large  lingam  of 
Maliadeva.  Were  it  not  for  this  name,  I should  be  inclined 
to  look  upon  this  huge  mound  as  the  remains  of  a palace,  as 
I succeeded  in  tracing  the  walls  of  what  appeared  to  have 
been  a large  room,  72  feet  in  length  from  north  to  south,  by 
63  feet  in  width,  the  Avails  being  6 feet  thick.  About  500  feet 
beyond  the  north-east  angle  of  the  fort  there  is  another  re- 
markable mound  which  is  rather  more  than  34  feet  in  height. 
It  stands  in  the  midst  of  a quadrangular  terrace,  600  in 
length  by  500  feet  in  breadth,  and,  as  well  as  I could  ascer- 
tain from  an  excavation  at  the  top,  it  is  the  remains  of  a 
large  square  temple.  Close  by  on  the  east,  and  within  the 
quadrangle,  there  are  the  ruins  of  two  small  temples.  To  the 
eastward  of  the  Jwala  Devi  temple,  there  is  a curious  circular 
flat- topped  mound  of  earth,  68  feet  in  diameter,  surrounded 
by  a brick  wall  from  7 to  11  feet  in  height.  It  is  called 
Rdmgir  Gosain-ka-tila,  or  “ the  mound  of  lldmgir  Gosain” 
from  which  I infer  that  it  is  the  burial  place  of  a modern 
Gosain.  To  the  south  of  the  fort,  near  the  temple  of  Jagesar 
Mahadeva,  there  is  a third  large  mound,  22  feet  in  height, 
which  was  once  crowned  by  a temple  of  20  feet  square  inside. 
The  bricks  have  only  recently  been  removed,  and  the  square 
core  of  earth  still  remains  perfect.  To  the  westward  of  this 
last,  there  is  a fourth  mound,  on  which  I traced  the  ruins  of 
a temple  30  feet  square  standing  in  the  midst  of  a raised 
quadrangle  about  500  feet  square.  Besides  these  there  are 
ten  smaller  mounds,  which  make  up  altogether  14,  or  just 
one-half  the  number  of  the  Brahmanical  temples  AAThich  are 
mentioned  by  IlAven  Thsang. 

The  only  ruin  w7hicli  appeared  to  me  to  be  of  undoubted 
Buddhist  origin  was  a solid  brick  mound  20  feet  in  height,  to 
the  south-west  of  Jagesar  Mahadeva,  and  close  to  the  small 
village  of  Khargpur.  The  base  of  the  mound  is  upwards  of 
200  feet  in  diameter.  The  solid  brick-work  at  the  top  is  still 
60  feet  thick ; but  as  it  is  broken  all  round,  its  original 



diameter  must  have  been  much  greater,  probably  not  less  than 
80  feet.  But  even  this  larger  diameter  is  too  small  for  a 
Stupa  of  200  feet  in  height  of  the  hemispherical  form  of 
Asoka’s  time  ; a Stupa  of  that  early  period,  even  when  pro- 
vided with  both  plinth  and  cupola,  would  not  have  exceeded 
100  feet  in  height.  Unless,  therefore,  we  may  suppose  that 
there  is  a mistake  of  100  feet  in  the  text  of  II wen  Tlisang,  I 
feel  quite  unable  to  offer  any  identification  whatever  of  the 
Buddhist  remains  of  Govisana  as  described  by  the  Chinese 


Prom  Govisana  Hwen  Tlisang  proceeded  to  the  south- 
east 400  li,  or  66  miles,  to  Ahi-clii-ta-lo,  or  Ahichhatra.  This 
once  famous  place  still  preserves  its  ancient  name  as 
Ahichhatr,  although  it  has  been  deserted  for  many  centuries. 
Its  history  reaches  hack  to  the  time  of  the  Mahdbhdrata,  at 
which  date  it  was  the  capital  of  Northern  Ranclidla.  The 
name  is  written  Ahi-kshctra,  as  well  as  Ahi-clihatra , hut  the 
local  legend  of  Adi  Raja  and  the  Naga,  who  formed  a canopy 
over  his  head  when  asleep,  shows  that  the  latter  is  the  correct 
form.  This  grand  old  fort  is  said  to  have  been  built  by  Raja 
Adi,  an  Ahir,  whose  future  elevation  to  sovereignty  was  fore- 
told by  Rrona  when  he  found  him  sleeping  under  the 
guardianship  of  a serpent  with  expanded  hood.  The  place  is 
mentioned  by  Ptolemy  as  Adisadra , which  proves  that  the 
legend  attached  to  the  name  of  Adi  is  at  least  as  old  as  the 
beginning  of  the  Christian  era.  The  fort  is  also  called 
Adikot,  but  the  more  common  name  is  Alvicliliatr. 

According  to  the  Mahdhharata  the  great  kingdom  of 
Ranclidla  extended  from  the  Himalaya  Mountains  to  the 
Chambal  River.  The  capital  of  North  Ranclidla,  or  Rohil- 
khand,  was  Ahi-chhatra,  and  that  of  South  Ranclidla,  or  the 
central  Gangetic  Doab,  was  Kdmpilya,  now  Kampil,  on  the 
old  Ganges  between  Budaon  and  Farokhabad.*  Just  before 
the  great  war,  or  about  1430  B.  C.,  the  King  of  Ranclidla, 
named  Rrupada,  was  conquered  by  Rrona , the  preceptor  of 
the  five  Pandus.  Rrona  retained  North  Ra nclidla  for  himself, 
but  restored  the  southern  half  of  the  kingdom  to  Rrupada . 
According  to  this  account  the  name  of  Ahi-chhatra,  and 

* See  Plate  No.  II.  for  the  positions  of  the  two  Panchalas  in  the  map  of  the  North- 
Western  Provinces. 



consequently  also  the  legend  of  Adi  Raja  and  the  serpent, 
are  many  centuries  anterior  to  the  rise  of  Buddhism. 

It  would  appear,  however,  that  the  Buddhists  must  have 
adopted  and  altered  the  legend  to  do  honour  to  their  great 
teacher,  for  Hwen  Thsang  records  that  outside  the  town 
there  was  a N aga-hrada,  or  “ serpent  tank,”  near  which 
Buddha  had  preached  the  law  for  seven  days  in  favour  of  the 
Serpent  Iving,  and  that  the  spot  was  marked  by  a Stupa  of 
King  Asoka.  Now,  as  the  only  existing  Stupa  at  this  place 
is  called  Chattr,  I infer  that  the  Buddhist  legend  represented 
the  Nag  a King  after  his  conversion  as  forming  a canopy  over 
Buddha  with  his  expanded  hood.  I think,  also,  that  the 
Stupa  erected  on  the  spot  where  the  conversion  took  place 
would  naturally  have  been  called  Ahi-chhatra,  or  the  “ ser- 
pent canopy.”  A similar  story  is  told  at  Buddha-Gaya  of 
the  Naga  King  Muchalincla , who  with  liis  expanded  hood 
sheltered  Buddha  from  the  shower  of  rain  produced  by  the 
malignant  demon  Mara. 

The  account  of  Ahi-chhatra  given  by  II wen  Thsang  is 
unfortunately  very  meagre,  otherwise  we  might  most  pro- 
bably have  identified  many  of  the  existing  ruins  with  the 
Buddhist  works  of  an  early  age.*'  The  capital  was  17  or  18  li, 
or  just  three  miles,  in  circuit,  and  was  defended  by  natural 
obstacles.  It  possessed  12  monasteries,  containing  about 
1,000  monks,  and  nine  Bralimanical  temples,  with  about  300 
worshippers  of  Iswara  Neva  (Siva),  who  smeared  their  bodies 
with  ashes.  The  Stupa  near  the  serpent  tank  outside  the 
town  has  already  been  mentioned.  Close  beside  it  there  were 
four  small  Stupas  built  on  the  spots  where  the  four  previous 
Buddhas  had  either  sat  or  walked.  Both  the  size  and  the 
peculiar  position  of  the  ruined  fortress  of  Ahi-chliatra  agree 
so  exactly  with  II wen  Tlisang’s  description  of  the  ancient 
Ahi-chhatra , that  there  can  be  no  doubt  whatever  of  their 
identity.  The  circuit  of  the  walls,  as  they  stand  at  present, 
is  19,400  feet,  or  upwards  of  3^  miles.  The  shape  may  be 
described  as  an  irregular  right-angled  triangle,  the  west  side 
being  5,600  feet  in  length,  the  north  side  6,400  feet,  and  the 
long  side  to  the  south-east  7,400  feet.  The  fort  is  situated 
between  the  Ram  Ganga  and  Gdnghan  Rivers,  which  are 
both  difficult  to  cross ; the  former  on  account  of  its  broad 
sands,  the  latter  on  account  of  its  extensive  ravines.  Both  on 

* Julien’s  II wen  Thsang,  II.,  p.  231. 

P la-tv  xl  in 

A Cuniung*ham  del. 

Jiltho.  at  “.he  Survr.  Genl’s.  Office.  Cal.  Septembet  1371 



the  north  and  east  the  place  is  rendered  almost  inaccessible 
by  the  Riria  Nala,  a difficult  ravine  with  steep  broken  banks, 
and  numerous  deep  pools  of  water  quite  impassable  by 
wheeled  vehicles.  For  this  reason  the  cart  road  to  Bareli, 
distant  only  18  miles  due  east,  is  not  less  than  23  miles.  In- 
deed the  only  accessible  side  of  the  position  is  the  north- 
west, from  the  direction  of  Lakhnor,  the  ancient  capital 
of  the  Katehria  llajputs.  It,  therefore,  fully  merits  the 
description  of  Hiven  Tlisang  as  being  defended  by 
“natural  obstacles.”*  Ahi-chhatra  is  only  seven  miles  to  the 
north  of  Aonla,  but  the  latter  half  of  the  road  is  rendered 
difficult  by  the  ravines  of  the  Gdnghan  River.  It  was  in 
this  very  position,  in  the  jangals  to  the  north  of  Aonla,  that 
the  Katehria  Bajputs  withstood  the  Muhammadans  under 
Firuz  Tughlak. 

The  ruins  of  Alii-clihatra  were  first  visited  by  Captain 
Hodgson,  the  Surveyor,  who  describes  the  place  as  “the 
ruins  of  an  ancient  fortress  several  miles  in  circumference, 
which  appears  to  have  had  31  bastions,  and  is  known  in  the 
neighbourhood  by  the  name  of  the ‘ Pandus  Fort.’  ” Accord- 
ing to  my  survey  there  are  only  32  towers,  but  it  is  quite 
possible  that  one  or  two  may  have  escaped  my  notice,  as  I 
found  many  parts  so  overgrown  with  thorny  jungle  as  to  be 
inaccessible.  The  towers  are  generally  from  28  to  30  feet  in 
height,  excepting  on  the  west  side,  where  they  rise  to  35  feet. 
A single  tower  near  the  south-west  corner  is  47  feet  in  height 
above  the  road  outside.  The  average  height  of  the  interior 
mass  is  from  15  to  20  feet.  Many  of  the  present  towers, 
however,  are  not  ancient,  as  an  attempt  was  made  by  Ali 
Muhammad  Khan,  about  200  years  ago,  to  restore  the  fort 
with  a view  of  making  it  his  stronghold  in  case  he  should 
be  pushed  to  extremities  by  the  King  of  Delhi.  The  new 
walls  are  said  to  have  been  1^  rjaz  thick,  which  agrees  with 
my  measurements  of  the  parapets  on  the  south-eastern  side, 
which  vary  from  2 feet  9 inches  to  3 feet  3 inches  in  thick- 
ness at  top.  According  to  popular  tradition,  Ali  Muhammad 
expended  about  a haror  of  rupees,  or  one  million  pounds 
sterling,  in  this  attempt,  which  he  was  finally  obliged  to 
abandon  on  account  of  its  costliness.  I estimate  that  he 
may,  perhaps,  have  spent  about  one  lakh  of  rupees,  or 

I 2 

* Julien’s  II  wen  Tlisang,  II.,  231. 



£10,000,  in  repairing  tlie  ramparts  and  in  re-building  the 
parapets.  There  is  an  arched  gateway  on  the  south-east 
side,  which  must  have  been  built  by  the  Musulmans,  but  as 
no  new  bricks  were  made  by  them,  the  cost  of  their  work 
would  have  been  limited  to  the  labour  alone.  The  ramparts 
are  18  feet  thick  at  the  base  in  some  places,  and  between  14 
and  15  feet  in  others.* 

There  are  three  great  mounds  inside  the  fort,  and  outside, 
both  to  the  north  and  west,  there  are  number  of  mounds  of 
all  sizes,  from  20  feet  to  1,000  feet  in  the  diameter.  To  the 
north-west,  distant  one  mile,  there  is  a large  tank  called  the 
Gandhdn  Sdgcir,  which  has  an  area  of  125  bigalis,  and  about 
one-quarter  of  a mile  beyond  it  there  is  another  tank  called 
the  Adi  Sugar,  which  has  an  area  of  150  bigalis.  The  latter 
is  said  to  have  been  made  by  Adi  Baja  at  the  same  time  as 
the  fort.  The  waters  are  collected  by  an  earthen  embank- 
ment faced  on  both  sides  with  bricks  of  large  size.  The 
Gandhdn  Sugar  is  also  embanked  both  to  the  east  and  south. 
The  mounds  to  the  south  of  the  tanks  are  covered  with  large 
bricks,  both  plain  and  moulded;  but  judging  from  their 
shapes,  they  must  all  have  belonged  to  temples,  or  other 
straight  walled  buildings,  and  not  to  Stupas.  There  is 
nothing  to  show  whether  these  are  the  remains  of  Buddhist 
or  of  Brahmanical  buildings,  but  from  their  extent  it  is  pro- 
bable that  they  were  the  former. 

According  to  Hwen  Thsang  there  were  only  nine  Brah- 
manical temples  at  Ahi-chhatra  in  A.  D.  634,  all  of  which 
wrould  appear  to  have  been  dedicated  to  Siva.  But  as  Bud- 
dhism declined  this  number  must  have  been  increased,  for  I 
discovered  the  ruins  of  not  less  than  twenty  temples  of  various 
sizes,  of  which  one  is  gigantic,  four  are  large,  five  are  of 
middle  size,  and  twelve  of  small  dimensions.  Three  of  these 
are  inside  the  fort,  and  the  others  are  grouped  together  out- 
side on  the  west  road.  I made  excavations  in  most  of  these 
mounds,  all  of  which  yielded  moulded  bricks  of  various 
patterns,  but  only  two  of  them  afforded  sculptures  by  which 
their  original  purpose  could  be  absolutely  identified.  These 
two  temples  are  marked  as  bios.  I.  and  £V.  in  my  survey  of 
the  ruins. 

See  Plate  No.  XL1II.  for  a map  of  Alii-cliliatra. 


Plate  XLIV. 

View  of  the  Chhalr,  or  Great  Stupa. 


Inscribed  Stone 
at  Dilwan. 


Ruined  Lingam  Temple. 

* fl  $ 

2 ^ 5 £ 

9,  & 2 J( 

5 b § 

:r  f ^ 



Ft  * *1 
-0  j5  ^ vi\ 

W ? -5  'S  a 

1 S <8  5 « 

3 $>*■ 

*5  a 

Pillar  of  Buddhist  Railing 

07-d  W 





Plan  of  Temple. 

A.  del. 

Fhmczmcog^aphed  a;  tRe  Surveyor  General's  Office  Calcutta 



Tlie  remains  of  No.  I.  temple  form  a mound  G5  feet  9 
inclies  in  height  above  the  country,  and  upwards  of  30  feet 
above  the  walls  of  the  fortress.  This  lofty  mound  stands  in- 
side the  fort  near  the  middle  of  the  north  wall,  and  forms 
the  most  conspicious  object  amongst  the  ruins  of  the  mighty 
fortress  of  Alii-chhatra.  The  floor  of  the  temple  is  60  feet 
above  the  ground,  and  at  this  enormous  height  stood  a 
colossal  ling  am,  3 feet  6^  inches  in  diameter,  and  upwards  of  8 
feet  in  height,  which  must  have  been  visible  from  both  east 
and  west  through  the  open  doors  of  the  temple  for  a distance 
of  some  miles.  The  interior  of  the  temple  is  only  14  feet  4 
inches  by  10^  feet.  The  north  and  south  walls  are  9 feet  5 
inches  thick,  and  the  east  and  west  walls  only  5 feet  9 inches ; 
but  on  these  two  sides  there  are  open  porches  outside  the 
two  entrances  which  increase  the  thickness  of  the  walls  to 
19  feet  on  the  west  side,  and  to  14  feet  1 1 inches  on  the 
east.  The  exterior  dimensions  of  the  temple  are  48  feet  3 
inches  by  29  feet  4 inches.  Prom  these  dimensions 

I calculate  that  the  temple  must  have  been  about  100  feet  in 
height  above  its  own  floor,  or  165  feet  above  the  country. 
The  base  of  the  stone  lingam  is  square,  the  middle  part  oc- 
tagonal, and  the  upper  part  hemispherical.  A trisul,  or 
trident,  is  cut  upon  the  base.  The  upper  portion  of  the 
lingam  is  broken.  The  people  say  that  it  was  struck  by 
lightning,  but  from  the  unshattered  state  of  the  large  block 
I am  more  disposed  to  ascribe  the  fracture  to  the  hammer  of 
the  Muhammadans. 

Mound  No.  II.,  which  is  also  inside  the  fort  to  the  west 
of  the  large  mound,  is  35  feet  in  height,  and  from  5 to  10 
feet  above  the  general  line  of  the  ramparts.  It  shows  the 
remains  of  a large  square  building  with  a long  flight  of  steps 
on  the  west  side.  No.  III.  mound  is  only  30  feet  in  height, 
and  is  covered  with  scrub  jungle.  There  are  traces  of  walls 
on  the  surface,  but  the  jungle  prevented  their  immediate  ex- 
cavation. I will  take  an  early  opportunity  of  exploring  both 
of  these  mounds,  as  I feel  satisfied  that  they  are  the  remains 
of  large  Brahmanical  temples. 

No.  IV.  mound  stands  about  1,000  feet  outside  the  west 
gate  of  the  fort.  It  is  300  feet  square  at  base,  and  30  feet 
in  height,  and  has  two  smaller  mounds  attached  to  the  north- 
east corner.  On  excavating  the  surface  I discovered  the 
foundations  of  a temple,  11  feet  square  inside,  with  walls  34 



feet  thick,  and  a long  pedestal  or  raised  platform  for  the  re- 
ception of  statues.  The  entrance  is  on  the  east  side  towards 
the  town.  Amongst  the  ruins  I found  a seated  terracotta 
ligurc  of  Siva,  12  inches  in  height,  with  four  arms  and  three 
eyes,  and  one  hand  holding  a large  lotus  flower.  I found 
also  in  red  stone  a small  right  hand  grasping  the  hilt  of  a 
sword,  and  a left  hand  of  three-quarter  life  size,  grasping  a 
large  couch.  As  the  last  must  have  belonged  to  a figure  of 
Yishnn,  it  is  possible  that  the  temple  was  dedicated  to  that 
god;  but  a projecting  portion  of  the  pedestal  leads  me  to  be- 
lieve that  it  must  have  been  occupied  by  a lingam,  and  if  so, 
the  principal  figure  would  have  been  that  of  Mahadeva. 
There  was  also  a large  quantity  of  ashes  inside  this  temple, 
from  which  I infer  that  it  was  most  probably  destroyed  by 
the  Musulmans  in  one  of  their  early  expeditions  against  the 
Katehria  llajputs. 

The  Buddhist  remains  at  Alii-chliatra  are  both  more 
extensive  and  more  ancient  than  those  of  the  Brahmans.  In 
my  survey  I have  marked  them  by  the  letters  of  the  alpha- 
bet to  distinguish  them  from  the  Brahmanical  ruins,  which 
are  numbered.  Only  three  of  the  Buddhist  mounds  have 
been  excavated,  but  as  most  of  the  others  have  furnished 
materials  for  the  neighbouring  villages,  it  docs  not  seem 
likely  that  their  excavation  would  be  attended  with  any 

The  most  important  of  the  Buddhist  ruins  is  an  irregular 
shaped  mound,  about  1,000  feet  square,  from  the  centre  of 
which  rises  a large  Stupa  of  solid  brick- work,  which  -the 
people  call  Chhatr.  I have  already  identified  this  with  the 
great  Stupa  which  was  built  over  the  spot  where  Buddha 
converted  the  Serpent  King.  It  is  surrounded  by  eight 
smaller  mounds,  of  which  four  would  appear  to  he  the  ruins 
of  Stupas,  and  three  of  temples,  whilst  one  only  is  doubtful. 
Now,  II wen  Thsang  describes  the  great  Stupa  as  having  on 
one  side  of  it  four  small  Stupas,  which  account  agrees  exactly 
with  the  position  of  the  four  small  mounds  above-mentioned. 
I have  no  doubt,  therefore,  as  to  the  identity  of  the  Chhatr 
mound  with  the  Stupa  of  II wen  Thsang,  although  I was 
unable  to  discover  any  certain  trace  of  the  tank  called  the 
Ndga-hrada  or  “ serpent  pond”  by  the  Chinese  pilgrim.  It 
is  quite  possible,  however,  that  a tank  may  once  have  existed 
on  the  south-west  side,  where  the  ground  is  still  very  low. 



The  Great  ruin  called  Cliluitr  is  a mass  of  solid  brick- 

O # 

work,  40  feet  in  height  above  the  fields,  and  30  feet  in 
diameter  at  top.  The  original  building  was  a hemisphere  of 
50  feet  diameter,  which  was  raised  upon  a base  or  plinth  15 
feet  in  height.  At  some  later  period  an  outer  casing,  12^  feet 
thick,  was  added,  which  increased  the  diameter  to  75  feet,  and 
the  height  of  the  crown  of  the  hemisphere  to  52^  feet.  Allow- 
ing two-sevenths  of  the  diameter  for  the  height  of  the  cupola  or 
pinnacle,  which  is  the  proportion  observed  in  the  Sanclii  bas- 
reliefs,  the  total  height  of  the  original  Stupa  would  have  been 
57  feet,  and  that  of  the  later  Stupa  77  feet.  I made  several 
superficial  excavations  around  the  base  in  the  hope  of  finding 
some  portions  of  the  stone  railings  with  which  the  Stupa 
was  most  probably  surrounded,  but  without  success.  I still 
believe,  however,  that  there  must  have  been  the  usual 
Euddliist  railings  around  this  Stupa , and  that  a further  search 
would  probably  bring  some  of  the  pillars  to  light.  I found, 
however,  a number  of  curved  wedge-shaped  bricks  that  must 
have  belonged  to  a circle  of  between  15  and  1G  feet  in  diame- 
ter,  and  which,  I presume,  are  the  remains  of  the  cupola.* 

If  I am  right  in  my  identification  of  this  Stupa  with 
that  which  was  built  near  the  Serpent  Tank,  its  original  con- 
struction must  be  referred  to  the  reign  of  Asoka,  or  about  250 
B.  C.  A strong  argument  in  favor  of  this  date  is  the  simi- 
larity of  its  shape  to  that  of  the  Bhilsa  Topes,  which  are  un- 
doubtedly of  Asoka’s  age.  The  date  of  the  enlargement  of  the 
Stupa  can  only  be  fixed  approximately  by  inferring  from 
llwen  Tlisang’s  silence  that  it  must  have  been  in  «-ood  order 
at  the  time  of  his  visit.  Admitting  this  to  have  been  the 
case,  the  date  of  the  enlargement  cannot  be  placed  earlier 
than  about  A.  D.  400  to  500. 

The  great  Stupa  attracted  the  attention  of  some  British 
Officer,  about  30  years  ago,  who  dug  a gallery  into  it,  21  feet 
in  length,  and  then  sunk  a well  for  some  unknown  depth, 
which  I found  filled  with  rubbish.  I made  use  of  this 
old  gallery,  and  continued  it  to  the  centre  of  the  Stupa, 
where  it  met  a shaft  which  I had  sunk  from  the  top.  Prom, 
this  point  I carried  the  shaft  downwards,  making  use  of  the 
gallery,  for  the  removal  of  the  bricks.  At  a depth  of  27  feet 
from  the  present  top,  or  at  7 feet  below  the  centre  of  the 

# See  Hate  No.  XL1V.  for  a view  of- this  Stupa,. 



older  hemisphere,  I found  a low  pyramidal  topped  vessel  of 
common  red  unglazed  earthenware,  8 inches  in  diameter. 
Inside  this  vessel  there  was  a small  steatite  box  containing 
many  minute  fragments  of  seed  pearls,  several  pieces  of  blue 
glass,  one  large  bead  of  red  amber,  and  about  a tea  spoonful 
of  little  bits  of  rock  crystal.  Mixed  with  these  were  ten 
small  cylindrical  pierced  heads  of  a dirty  white  colour  like 
old  chalk.  They  consist  chiefly  of  carbonate  of  lime  with  a 
trace  of  some  other  substance,  and  are  most  probably  only 
the  remains  of  some  artificial  beads.  The  little  steatite  box 
is  a sphere  of  2 inches  diameter,  but  rather  pointed  at  the 
top  and  bottom.  Its  general  colour  is  white  with  a few 
purple  blotches.  The  whole  is  rudely  ornamented,  the  top 
with  flowers,  and  the  bottom  with  animals  of  school-boy 
design.  The  inside  also  is  rudely  ornamented,  but  with 
simple  lines  only.  There  is  no  trace  of  any  inscription. 

At  6f  feet  below  the  deposit  just  described,  or  at  13f 
feet  below  the  centre  of  the  hemisphere,  a second  deposit 
was  found,  imbedded  in  the  ground  immediately  under  the 
last  course,  of  a globular-shaped  mottled  steatite  vase,  85- 
inclies  in  diameter  and  G inches  in  height.  This  vase  has  a 
neck  3 inches  in  diameter  inside  and  2f  inches  in  height, 
thus  making  the  whole  height  of  the  vessel  8f  inches.  This 
is  divided  into  two  equal  portions,  the  lower  half  having  an 
inner  lip,  which  is  overlapped  by  the  upper  half.  The  vessel 
is  quite  plain,  excepting  only  a few  belts  of  simple  lines 
which  encircle  it.  The  open  mouth  was  found  closed  by  the 
lid  of  a small  dark-colored  steatite  vase  exactly  similar  to 
several  that  were  discovered  in  the  Bhilsa  Topes.  Inside 
there  was  nothing  but  a hard  cake  of  earth,  6 inches  in 
diameter,  mixed  with  small  stones.  A similar  earthen  cake, 
but  only  2-|  inches  in  diameter,  was  found  in  the  earthenware 
jar  of  the  upper  deposit.  What  this  cake  may  be  I cannot 
at  present  say,  but  it  does  not  effervesce  with  acids. 

The  second  Buddhist  mound  which  has  yielded  important 
evidence  of  its  former  occupation  is  called  Katdri  Khera. 
It  is  situated  1,200  feet  to  the  north  of  the  old  fort,  and 
1,G00  feet  to  the  east  of  the  small  village  of  Nasratganj. 
The  mound  is  about  400  feet  square  and  20  feet  in  height. 
Close  by  there  is  a small  pond  called  the  31aswdse  Tdl ; but 
neither  this  name,  nor  that  of  Katdri  Khera,  would  seem  to 
have  any  reference  to  the  old  Buddhist  establishment  which 



formerly  stood  there.  Unfortunately  this  mound  has  fur- 
nished bricks  to  the  neighbouring  village  for  many  generations, 
so  that  hut  little  is  now  left  to  point  out  the  nature  of  the 
original  buildings.  A surface  excavation  brought  to  light  a 
temple  26^-  feet  in  length  by  22  feet  in  breadth  outside,  and 
11  feet  square  inside.  The  plinth  is  still  standing  4^  feet  in 
height,  formed  of  blocks  of  kankar,  but  the  walls  have  alto- 
gether disappeared,  excepting  some  portions  of  a few  courses. 
The  doorway  faces  the  east,  from  which  I infer  that  the  en- 
shrined statue  was  most  probably  that  of  the  ascetic  Buddha, 
who  is  always  represented  seated  in  a similar  position  under 
the  holy  Pipal  Tree  of  Buddha-Gaya.  I am  also  led  to  the 
same  conclusion  by  the  discovery  of  a broken  statue  of  Buddha 
with  two  flying  figures  over  the  right  shoulder,  which  are  the 
usual  accompaniments  of  the  ascetic  figures  of  Buddha. 
This  statue  is  broken  at  the  waist,  and  both  arms  are  lost ; 
but  the  fragment  is  still  2 feet  high  and  2 feet  broad,  from 
which  I infer  that  the  size  of  the  original  statue  was  not  less 
then  4 feet  in  height  by  3 feet  in  breadth ; and  this  I believe 
to  have  been  the  principal  figure  of  the  temple. 

In  the  same  place,  five  other  carved  and  sculptured 
stones  were  discovered,  of  which  one  is  an  inscribed  pillar  of 
a Buddhist  railing  of  middle  age.  The  pillar  is  broken,  but 
the  remaining  portions  of  the  socket  holes  are  sufficient  for 
the  restoration  of  the  original  dimensions.  The  fragment  is 
1 foot  11  inches  in  length,  with  a section  of  8-|  inches  by  4 
inches.  The  socket  holes  are  8 inches  long,  and  4f  inches 
apart,  which  in  a pillar  of  two  rails  would  give  a height  of  3 
feet  2|-  inches,  or  of  4 feet  3 inches  in  a pillar  of  three  rails. 
The  face  of  the  pillar  is  sculptured  with  six  rows  of  naked 
standing  figures,  there  being  5 figures  in  the  lowest  row,  and 
only  four  figures  in  each  of  the  others.  On  one  of  the  sides 
there  is  the  following  short  inscription  in  four  lines  of  the  age 
of  the  Guptas  : — 

Acharya  Iudranandi  Sishya  Mahddari  Parsicamatisya 


The  last  word  but  one  might,  perhaps,  be  read  as  patisya  ; 
but  the  remainder  of  the  inscription  is  quite  clear.  I under- 
stand it  to  record  the  gift  of  “ Mahddari , the  disciple  of  the 
teacher  Indranandi,  to  the  temple  ( Kottari ) of  Pdrsivamati 
Perhaps  the  term  Kottari  may  be  preserved  in  the  name  of 
Katdri  Khera , by  which  the  mound  is  now  known. 



The  other  sculptured  stones  are  not  of  ranch  interest. 
The  largest  is  a broken  statue  of  a standing  figure,  3 feet 
high  by  2 feet  broad,  which  appears  to  be  naked.  The 
bead,  the  feet,  and  the  right  arm  are  gone.  A second 
small  stone,  1 foot  long  and  5 inches  broad,  bears  the  figures 
of  the  Navagraha,  or  “Aine  Planets.”  On  the  back  there 
is  a short  inscription  of  only  eight  letters,  of  which  two  are 
somewhat  doubtful.  I read  the  whole  as  Sahada , Bhima, 
Devindra,  but  the  word  Bhima  is  very  doubtful.  A third 
stone,  2J  feet  long  and  1J  feet  square,  is  the  fragment  of  a 
large  pillar,  with  a lion  sculptured  on  each  of  its  four  faces. 
The  naked  figures  of  these  sculptures  belong  to  a somewhat 
late  period  of  Buddhism,  after  the  introduction  of  the  Tan- 
triha  doctrines,  which,  as  we  learn  from  Skanda  Gupta’s 
inscription  on  the  Bhitari  Pillar,  were  prevalent  during  the 
time  of  the  later  Guptas,  in  the  3rd  and  4tli  centuries  A.  DA 
As  the  forms  of  the  letters  of  these  inscriptions  are  also  those 
of  the  Gupta  period,  we  may  conclude  with  some  certainty 
that  the  Kottari , or  temple  of  Parsioamati,  was  erected  before 
the  fall  of  the  Gupta  dynasty  in  A.  D.  319. 

Pour  hundred  feet  to  the  south  of  the  great  bastion,  and 
close  to  the  south-west  angle  of  the  fort,  there  is  another 
extensive  mound,  marked  D in  the  map,  upwards  of  300  feet 
square  and  35  feet  in  height  above  the  road.  The  principal 
mass  of  ruin,  which  is  in  the  middle  of  the  west  side,  is  the 
remains  of  a large  temple,  40  feet  square  outside.  In  the 
middle  of  the  south  side  there  are  the  ruins  of  a small  build- 
ing which  may,  perhaps,  have  been  the  entrance  gateway.  To 
the  right  and  left  of  the  entrance  there  are  the  ruins  of 
two  small  temples,  each  14  feet  square  outside,  and  9 feet  4-| 
inches  inside,  raised  upon  a plinth  24  feet  square.  The 
centre  of  the  square  is  open,  and  has  evidently  never  been 
built  upon.  My  excavations  were  too  limited  to  ascertain 
more  than  I have  noted  above,  but  I propose  to  continue  the 
exploration  hereafter.  I believe  that  this  mound  is  the 
remains  of  a very  large  monastery  with  its  lofty  enclosed 
temple,  which  could  not  have  been  less  than  80  or  even  100 
feet  in  height. 

Connected  with  Ahi-chhatra  is  an  inscription  of  the 
Gupta  period  on  a square  pillar  found  near  the  village  of 

* I now  (1S71)  believe  these  naked  figures  to  be  Digambara  Jain  statues.  I possess 
several  as  old  as  the  first  century  before  Christ. 



Dilwari,  3 /cos,  or  4^  miles,  to  tlic  south  of  the  fort.  The 
inscription  consists  of  14  lines  of  five  letters  each,  the  letters 
of  one  line  being  placed  exactly  under  those  of  the  line 
above,  so  as  to  form  also  five  straight  perpendicular  lines. 
The  stone  is  2^.  feet  long,  1 foot  broad,  and  9 inches  thick  in 
the  middle,  hut  the  continual  sharpening  of  tools  has  worn 
down  the  edges  to  a breadth  of  from  7 to  7^  inches.  The 
inscription,  which  is  on  one  of  the  narrow  faces,  has  accord- 
ingly suffered  in  the  partial  loss  of  some  of  the  initial  and 
final  letters  of  several  lines.  The  other  three  faces  of  the 
stone  are  quite  plain,  and  there  is  nothing  whatever  to  show 
what  the  pillar  may  have  been  originally  intended  for. 

My  account  of  Ahi-chhatra  would  not  be  complete  without 
a reference  to  the  gigantic  lingam  near  the  village  of  Gulariya , 
2-|-  miles  to  the  north  of  the  fort,  and  to  the  Bri  apian  name 
of  the  village  of  Bhhi-laur,  one  mile  to  the  east  of  the  fort. 
Bhim-gaja  and  Bliim-laur  are  common  names  for  the  lingam 
in  all  the  districts  to  the  north  of  the  Ganges.  I have 
already  quoted  Hwen  Thsang’s  remark  that  the  nine  Brali- 
manical  temples  of  Ahi-chhatra  in  A.  D.  G34  were  dedicated 
to  Siva,  and  I may  now  add,  in  illustration,  that  only  in  one 
of  the  many  ruins  about  the  old  fort  did  I find  a trace  of  tlic 
worship  of  any  other  divinity. 


Prom  Ahi-c/ihatra  the  Chinese  pilgrim  proceeded  in  a 
south  direction,  a distance  of  from  260  to  270  li,  from  23  to 
25  miles,  to  the  Ganges,  which  he  crossed,  and  then  turning 
to  the  south-west  he  arrived  in  the  kingdom  of  Bi-lo-shan-na. 
llis  route  to  the  south  would  have  taken  him  through  Aonla 
and  Budaon  to  the  Buclh  Gang  a (or  old  Ganges)  somewhere 
near  Saha  war,  a few  miles  below  Boron,  both  of  which  places 
stood  on  the  main  stream  of  the  Ganges  so  late  as  400  years 
ago.  As  his  subsequent  route  is  said  to  have  been  to  the 
south-west,  I believe  that  he  must  have  crossed  the  Ganges 
close  to  Saliawar,  which  is  42  miles  from  Ahi-chhatra  in  a 
direct  line.  Prom  all  my  early  enquiries  I was  led  to  believe 
that  Boron  was  the  only  ancient  place  in  this  vicinity  ; and 
as  Hwen  Thsang  does  not  give  any  distance  for  his  south- 
•west  march,  I concluded  that  Soron  must  have  been  the  place 
to  which  he  gives  the  name  of  Pi-lo-shan-na.  I accordingly 

k 2 



visited  Soron,  which  is  undoubtedly  a place  of  very  great 
antiquity,  but  which  cannot,  I think,  be  the  place  visited  by 
the  Chinese  pilgrim.  I will,  however,  first  describe  Soron 
before  I proceed  to  discuss  the  superior  claims  of  the  great 
ruined  mound  of  Atranji-Kliera  to  be  identified  with  the  Pi- 
lo-shan-na  of  the  Chinese  pilgrim. 

Soro7i  is  a large  town  on  the  right,  or  western,  bank  of 
the  Ganges,  on  the  high  road  between  Bareli  and  Mathura. 
The  place  was  originally  called  Ukala  Kshetra  ; but,  after  the 
demon  Hiranydksha  had  been  killed  by  the  Vardhci  Avatar , 
or  Boar  Incarnation  of  Vishnu,  the  name  was  changed  to 
Sukara  Kshetra,  or  “ the  place  of  the  good  deed.”  The 
ancient  town  is  represented  by  a ruined  mound  called  tlio 
Kilah  or  “ fort,”  which  is  one-quarter  of  a mile  in  length 
from  north  to  south,  and  somewhat  less  in  breadth.  It 
stands  on  the  high  bank  of  the  old  bed  of  the  Ganges,  which 
is  said  by  some  to  have  flowed  immediately  under  it  so  late 
as  200  years  ago.  The  modern  town  stands  at  the  foot  of  the 
old  mound  on  the  west  and  south  sides,  and  probably  con- 
tains about  5,000  inhabitants.  There  arc  no  dwellings  on 
the  old  mound,  which  is  occupied  only  by  the  temple  of  Sita - 
Rdmji  and  the  tomb  of  Sliekh  Jamal.  But  it  is  covered  with 
broken  bricks  of  large  size,  and  the  foundations  of  walls 
can  be  traced  in  all  directions.  The  mound  is  said  to  bo 
the  mins  of  a fort  built  by  Baja  Somadatta  of  Soron  many 
hundred  years  ago.  But  the  original  settlement  of  the 
place  is  very  much  older,  being  attributed  to  the  fabu- 
lous Raja  Vena  Chakravartti,  who  plays  such  a con- 
spicuous part  in  all  the  legends  of  North  Bihar,  Qudli,  and 

The  temples  of  Soron  are  very  numerous,  and  several 
of  them  are  said  to  be  old.  But  the  only  temples  of 
any  consequence  are  those  of  Sita-Rdmji,  on  the  top  of 
the  mound,  and  Vardhaji  to  the  north-west  of  the  city. 
A great  annual  fair  is  held  near  the  latter  temple  on  the 
lltli  of  the  waxing  moon  of  Mdrgasirsha , in  remembrance 
of  the  destruction  of  the  demon  by  the  Boar  Incarnation  of 
Vishnu.  It  contains  a statue  of  Vardiha-Lakshmi , and  is 
visited  by  crowds  of  pilgrims.  The  temple  of  Sita- Rdmji, 
which  is  said  to  have  been  ruined  by  Aurang  Shah  (or 
Aurangzib)  was  restored  by  a wealthy  Baniya,  only  four  years 
ago,  by  building  up  the  spaces  between  the  pillars  with  plain 



white- washed  walls.  Internally  the  temple  is  a square  of  27 
feet  supported  on  16  stone  pillars ; hut  the  people  say  that  the 
original  building  was  much  larger,  and  that  it  contained 
32  pillars.  This  account  is  most  probably  correct,  as  the 
foundations  of  the  walls  of  the  sanctum,  or  shrine,  are  still 
standing  at  the  back,  or  west  side,  of  the  temple.  There 
are  also  10  superfluous  pillars  inside  the  temple,  of  which 
two  support  the  broken  architraves,  and  eight  are  built  into 
the  corner  spaces  of  the  walls.  The  style  of  these  columns 
is  similar  to  that  of  the  set  of  pillars  in  the  south-east  corner 
of  the  quadrangle  of  the  Great  Kuth  Mosque  at  Delhi, 
which  bear  the  date  of  Sam  vat  1121,  or  A.  D.  1007.  That 
this  date  is  not  too  early  for  the  Soron  temple  is  proved  by 
the  inscriptions  of  various  pilgrims  who  have  visited  the 
shrine.  As  the  oldest  legible  record  bears  the  date  of  Samvat 
1226,  or  A.  D.  1169,  the  date  of  the  erection  of  the  temple 
cannot,  therefore,  be  placed  later  than  A.  D.  1000. 

These  pilgrims’  records  are  generally  short  and  uninter- 
esting, hut  as  there  are  no  less  than  38  of  them,  hearing 
dates  which  range  from  A.  D.  1169  to  1511,  they  become 
valuable  for  tracing  the  history  of  the  temple.  The  earliest  date 
after  the  Muhammadan  conquest  is  A.  D.  1241,  and  from 
that  time  down  to  A.  D.  1290  there  are  no  less  than  15  dated 
records,  showing  that  Soron  continued  to  be  a much  fre- 
quented place  of  pilgrimage  during  the  whole  period  of  the 
Ghori  dynasty,  wLich  ended  in  A.  I).  1289.  But  during  the 
rule  of  the  next  two  dynasties,  the  Khiljis  and  Tucjhlaks, 
there  is  only  one  inscription,  dated  in  A.  D.  1375,  in  the 
reign  of  Tiruz.  Now,  as  nearly  one-half  of  this  period  was 
occupied  by  the  reigns  of  the  cruel  despot  Ala-ud-din  Kliilji 
and  the  ferocious  madman  Muhammad  Tughlak,  it  seems 
only  reasonable  to  conclude  that  the  people  were  deterred 
from  making  their  usual  pilgrimages  by  the  persecution  of 
their  Muhammadan  rulers.  The  next  record  is  dated  in 
A.  D.  1429,  and  from  that  time  down  to  1511  there  are  16  dated 
inscriptions ; hut  as  no  less  than  13  of  this  number  belong 
to  the  reign  of  Bahlol  Lodi,  I infer  that  the  rule  of  the  Syad 
dynasty  was  not  favourable  to  Hindu  pilgrimages.  I infer 
also  that  the  temple  must  have  been  destroyed  during  the 
reign  of  the  intolerant  Sikandar  Lodi,  because  the  series  of 
inscriptions  closes  with  A.  D.  1511,  or  just  six  years  before 
the  end  of  his  reign.  Had  the  temple  existed  during  the 



happy  century  when  the  sceptre  of  India  was  swayed  by  the 
tolerant  Akbar,  the  indifferent  Jahangir,  and  the  politic  Shalt 
Jahan,  it  is  almost  certain  that  some  records  of  the  pilgrims’ 
visits  would  have  been  inscribed  on  the  pillars  of  the  temple. 
Por  this  reason  I feel  satisfied  that  the  destruction  of  the 
great  temple  of  Soron  must  be  assigned  to  an  earlier  period 
than  that  of  the  bigoted  Aurang  Shah. 



The  great  mound  of  ruins  called  Atranji-Khera  is  situated 
on  the  right,  or  west  bank,  of  the  Kali  Nadi,  four  miles 
to  the  south  of  Kcirsdnci,  and  eight  miles  to  the  north  of 
Eyta,  on  the  Grand  Trunk  Boad.  It  is  also  15  miles  to 
the  south  of  Soron,  and  43  miles  to  the  north-west  of  Sanlcisa 
in  a direct  line,  the  road  distance  being  not  less  than  48  or 
50  miles.  In  the  Ain  A/cbari  Atranji  is  recorded  as  one  of 
the  Parganalis  of  Kanoj,  under  the  name  of  Sikandarpur 
Atrcji.  Sikandarpur , which  is  now  called  Sikandrabad,  is 
a village  on  the  left  bank  of  the  Kali  Nadi  opposite 
Atranji.  Prom  this  it  would  appear  that  Atranji  was  still 
occupied  in  the  reign  of  Akbar.  The  Parganah  was  after- 
wards called  Karsdna,  but  it  is  now  known  by  the  name  of 
Sahdwar  Karsdna,  or  of  Sahdwar  only.  The  name  given  by 
the  Chinese  pilgrim  is  Fi-lo-shan-na,  for  which  M.  Julien 
proposes  to  read  Virasana .*  So  far  back  as  1848  I pointed  out 
that,  as  both  pil  and  kar  arc  Sanskrit  names  for  an  elephant, 
it  was  probable  that  Filosana  might  be  the  same  as  Karsdna, 
the  large  village  which  I have  already  mentioned  as-  being 
four  miles  to  the  north  of  Atranji  Kliera.  The  chief  objec- 
tion to  this  identification  is  the  fact  that  Karsdna  is  appa- 
rently not  a very  old  place,  although  it  is  sometimes  called 
Deora  Karsdna,  a name  which  implies  the  possession  of  a 
temple  of  note  at  some  former  period.  It  is,  however, 
possible  that  the  name  of  Karsdna  may  once  have  been  joined 
to  Atranji,  in  the  same  way  that  we  find  Sikandarpur  Atreji 
in  the  Ain  Akbari.  As  the  identification  of  Karsdna  with 
Filosana  is  purely  conjectural,  it  is  useless  to  hazard  any 
more  speculations  on  this  subject.  The  bearing  and  distance 
from  Sankisa,  as  recorded  by  Hwen  Thsang,  point  to  the 
neighbourhood  of  Sirpura,  near  which  there  is  a small  vil- 
lage called  Filkuni  or  Filokuni,  which  is  the  PilukJioni  of 

* Julien’s  II wen  Thsang,  II.,  235. 



our  maps.  It  is,  however,  a very  petty  place ; and,  although  it 
hoasts  of  a small  khera,  or  mound  of  ruins,  it  cannot,  X 
think,  have  ever  heen  more  than  one-fourth  of  the  circuit  of 
two  miles  which  II wen  Thsang  attributes  to  Pi-lo-shan-na. 
But  there  are  two  strong  points  in  its  favour,  namely,  1st, 
its  position  which  agrees  both  in  hearing  and  distance  with 
the  Chinese  pilgrim’s  account;  and  2nd,  its  name,  which  is 
almost  identical  with  the  old  name,  sh  being  very  commonly 
pronunced  as  kh,  so  that  Ilwen  Thsang’s  Piloshanna  would 
usually  be  pronounced  Pilokhana. 

In  proposing  Atranji- Khera  as  the  site  of  the  ancient 
Piloshanna , I am  influenced  solely  by  the  fact  that  this  is  the 
only  large  place  besides  Soron  of  any  antiquity  in  this  part 
of  the  country.  It  is  true  that  the  distance  from  Sankisa  is 
somewhat  greater  than  that  recorded  by  the  Chinese  pilgrim, 
namely,  45  miles,  instead  of  33  miles,  but  the  hearing  is 
exact ; and  as  it  is  quite  possible  that  there  may  he  some 
mistake  in  Ilwen  Tlisang’s  recorded  distance,  I think  that 
Atranji-Khera  has  a better  claim  than  any  other  place  to  he 
identified  with  the  ancient  Piloshanna.  I have  not  visited  the 
place  myself,  as  I was  not  aware  of  its  importance  when  I was 
in  its  neighbourhood.  I have  had  it  inspected  by  a trust- 
worthy servant,  whose  report  shows  that  Atranji  must  once 
have  heen  a place  of  considerable  extent  and  importance. 
According  to  him,  the  great  mound  of  Atranji  is  3,250  in 
length,  and  2,550  in  breadth  at  the  base.  Now,  these  dimen- 
sions would  give  a circuit  of  about  two  miles,  which  is  the 
very  size  of  Piloshanna  as  recorded  by  Hwcn  Thsang.  Its 
highest  point  is  44  feet  9 inches,  which,  if  my  identification 
is  correct,  should  he  the  ruins  of  the  great  Stupa  of  Asoka, 
upwards  of  100  feet  in  height,  as  this  loftly  tower  is  said  to 
have  heen  situated  inside  a monastery  in  the  middle  of  the 
town.  Outside  the  town  there  were  two  other  monasteries, 
inhabited  by  300  monks.  These  may,  perhaps,  he  represented 
by  two  small  mounds  which  still  exist  on  the  east  side  of 
the  Great  Khera.  To  the  south  there  is  a third  mound, 
165  feet  in  length  by  105  feet  in  breadth,  which  may 
possibly  he  the  remains  of  one  or  more  of  the  five  Bramanical 
temples  described  by  Hwen  Thsang. 

Atranji-Khera  had  two  gates, — one  to  the  east,  towards 
the  Kali  Nadi,  and  the  other  to  the  south.  The  foundation 
of  the  place  is  attributed  to  Raja  Vena  Chakravartti. 



The  mound  is  covered  with  broken  bricks  of  large  size  and 
fragments  of  statues,  and  old  coins  are  said  to  be  frequently 
found.  All  the  existing  fragments  of  statues  are  said  to  be 
Brahmanical.  There  is  a temple  of  Mahadeo  on  the  mound, 
and  there  are  five  lingams  in  different  places,  of  which  one 
is  G feet  in  height.  The  principal  statue  is  that  of  a four- 
armed female  called  Devi,  but  which,  as  she  is  represented 
treading  upon  a prostrate  figure,  is  most  probably  Durga .* 

The  only  objection  to  the  identification  of  Atranji  with 
Piloshanna  is  the  difference  between  the  distance  of  200  li, 
or  33  miles,  as  stated  by  Hwen  Thsang,  and  the  actual  dis- 
tance of  43  miles  direct,  or  about  48  or  50  miles  by  road.  I 
have  already  suggested  the  possibility  of  there  being  some 
mistake  in  the  recorded  distance  of  Hwen  Thsang,  but  per- 
haps an  equally  probable  explanation  may  be  found  in  the 
difference  of  the  length  of  the  yojana.  Hwen  Thsang  states 
that  he  allowed  40  Chinese  li  to  the  yojana  ; but  if  the  old 
yojana  of  Ptohilkhand  differed  from  that  of  the  Central  Doab 
as  much  as  the  kos  of  these  districts  now  differ,  his  distances 
would  have  varied  by  half  a mile  in  every  kos,  or  by  two 
miles  in  every  yojana,  as  the  ftoliilkhand  kos  is  only  1^  mile, 
while  that  of  the  Doab  is  two  miles — the  latter  being  one- 
third  greater.  Now,  if  we  apply  this  difference  to  Hwen 
Thsang’s  measurement  of  200  li,  or  33  miles,  we  increase  the 
distance  at  once  to  44  miles,  which  agrees  with  the  direct 
measured  distance  on  the  map.  I confess,  however,  that  I 
am  rather  inclined  to  believe  in  the  possibility  of  there  being 
a mistake  in  Hwen  Thsang’s  recorded  distance,  as  I find 
exactly  the  same  measurement  of  200  li  given  as  the  distance 
between  Sankisa  and  Kanoj.  Now,  the  two  distances  are 
precisely  the  same,  that  is,  Sankisa  is  exactly  midway  between 
Atranji  and  Kanoj  ; and  as  the  latter  distance  is  just  50  miles 
by  my  measurement  along  the  high  road,  the  former  must 
also  he  the  same.  I w7ould,  therefore,  suggest  the  probability 
that  both  of  these  distances  should  be  300  li,  or  50  miles, 
instead  of  200  li  as  recorded  in  the  text.  In  favor  of  this 
proposed  correction  I may  cite  the  testimony  of  the  earlier 
Chinese  pilgrim  Pa  Hian,  who  makes  the  distance  from  San- 

* At  my  request  Atranji  was  visited  in  1865  by  my  friend  Mr.  C.  Horne,  then  Judge  of 
Manipuri,  whose  account  of  the  ruined  mound  will  be  found  in  the  Bengal  Asiatic  Society’s 
Journal,  1866,  p.  165.  The  mound  has  been  dug  up  in  all  directions  for  many  centu- 
ries in